Zoabi Bill Voted Down, Allowing Terrorist Sympathizers to Run for Knesset

Arab members of Knesset, Basel Jatas (L), Jamal Zahalka (C) and Masud Ganaim (R). (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Arab members of Knesset, Basel Jatas (L), Jamal Zahalka (C) and Masud Ganaim (R). (Hadas Parush/Flash90)

The so-called Zoabi Bill, which would have expanded the criteria for barring candidates for Knesset who are deemed enemies of the state, was defeated by a vote of 41 to 38, The Jerusalem Post reported.

The bill was submitted as an amendment to the law which disqualifies a candidate or party whose “actions clearly or implicitly reject Israel’s existence as a Jewish and democratic state, incites to violence or supports armed conflict by an enemy state or terrorist organization against Israel.”

The amendment, proposed by MK Sharon Gal (Yisrael Beitenu) added the words “including statements” after “actions.”

It was called the “Zoabi Bill” after MK Haneen Zoabi (Joint List), who was on the 2010 Gaza flotilla vessel Mavi Marmara.

In 2014, she again provoked calls for her expulsion from the Knesset after justifying the kidnapping of three teenagers in Gush Etzion — subsequently murdered, Hy”d — and denying it was terrorism, and for openly supporting Hamas.

Zoabi was cleared for running in the 2015 election after the High Court overturned a lower court decision banning her on grounds of insufficient evidence of her alleged  supported for armed conflict against the state.

Introducing his bill, Gal asserted that “statements like IDF soldiers are murderers or the boys’ kidnappers are not terrorists are severe incitement.
Despite the fact that the bill was defeated by majority vote, Zoabi claimed that it  represents a “tyranny of the majority that would make politics and the freedom to form political parties pointless.”

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