By Andrew Friedman/TPS
The Zionist Union Knesset faction called on the (Israel-Arab) Joint List party to work towards firing MK Basel Ghattas from the Knesset, Israel Radio reported Monday. Ghattas was indicted earlier this month on a series of charges related to his December 2016 visit to Palestinian security prisoners at Ketziot Prison.
He is accused of abusing his parliamentary immunity to smuggle cell phones, SIM cards and written materials to the prisoners. The expected indictment will include charges of use of property for purposes of terrorism, fraud and breach of trust by a public worker, fraudulently obtaining benefits under aggravated circumstances.
In addition, the Zionist Union said it would allow faction members to sign a petition to remove Ghattas from the Knesset. Yesh Atid, led by MK Yair Lapid, has also claimed the party would support a move to impeach Ghattas under the terms of a July 2016 impeachment law allowing a super-majority of 70 MKs to initiate impeachment proceedings, including at least 10 members of the parliamentary opposition. A recommendation to remove a sitting member of the Knesset must be approved by at least 90 MKs, upon which the member will be replaced with the next person on the party list.