Photo Credit: Flash 90
MK Basel Ghattas arrives at the Israel Police Lahav 433 investigation unit in Lod, December 20, 2016.

Knesset members have officially begun a campaign to formally impeach Arab Joint List member Basel Ghattas of the Balad Party.

The 72 signatures of Knesset members required to begin the proceedings were obtained late Monday night, according to the office of Minister Ze’ev Elkin.

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Knesset members on both sides of the political aisle have signed the petition demanding his ouster.

The list was to be handed to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein by the end of the evening.

The Knesset member is under indictment in connection with abusing his diplomatic immunity to smuggle in communications equipment to Hamas terrorists incarcerated at Ketziot Prison, bringing them cell phones, SIM cards and coded messages.

Ghattas was also questioned on Monday by the Israel Police National Fraud Investigations Unit about allegations of money laundering, forgery and corruption in relation to financing irregularities having to do with his membership in the Balad Party. The corruption investigation has been ongoing since September 2016.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.