Investigation to be opened into Arab-Israeli lawmaker for incitement

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has instructed Israel’s attorney general to open a criminal investigation against an Arab-Israeli lawmaker over her calls for violence against Israel.

Hanin Zoabi of the Arab Joint List called for a “real intifada” against Israel. Her statement was printed in al-Risala, the official newspaper of Hamas.

“Hundreds of thousands of worshipers should go up to Al- Aqsa in order to face down an Israeli plot for the blood of East Jerusalem residents,” Zoabi reportedly said. “Today there are actions only by individuals and what is needed is popular support. If only individual attacks continue without popular support, they will sputter out within a few days. Therefore the outpouring of thousands of our people will make these events a real intifada.”

Netanyahu said Sunday during the weekly Cabinet meeting that his government would use all means at its disposal to prevent incitement from within. “This wild and deceitful incitement is a clear call to violence. This is serious and I will not ignore it,” he said.


Netanyahu also said Sunday that he would convene a meeting to advance government action against the Islamic Movement in Israel.

Zoabi, who participated in the 2010 flotilla sail to Gaza to break Israel’s blockade organized by the Islamic IHH group in Turkey, has been censured in the past for anti-Israel statements. She was suspended from the Knesset for statements she made in the summer of 2014 encouraging Palestinian “popular resistance” and saying that the kidnappers of three Israeli teens, who later were murdered, were not terrorists.

She also was banned by the Central Elections Committee from running in Israel’s 2013 and 2015 elections, in decisions that were overturned by Israel’s Supreme Court.

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