נפתלי בנט ומשפחתו
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, wife Gilat and children
Photo: Photo: GPO
Ilana Sporta Haniya at a hearing to remand her to custody on Thursday

Israeli court reveals name of Likud supporter behind Bennett threats

Ilana Sporta Haniya, 65, arrested after a joint police and Shin Bet investigation, weeks after allegedly sending threatening letters containing live bullets to wife and son of PM; she denies wrongdoing

Liran Levy |
Updated: 05.12.22, 17:01
An Israeli court on Thursday lifted the gag order, allowing to reveal the name of a female Likud activist who sent death threats to a family of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.
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  • Ilana Sporta Haniya, 65, was arrested earlier this week on suspicion of sending threatening letters to Bennett’s wife and sons.
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    אילנה ספורטה בבית המשפט
    אילנה ספורטה בבית המשפט
    Ilana Sporta Haniya at a hearing to remand her to custody on Thursday
    (Photo: Moti Kimchi)
    Sporta Haniya , a resident of the southern city of Ashkelon, was arrested at the tail-end of a joint police and Shin Bet investigation, launched shortly after both Gilat Bennett and her 16-year old son Yoni both received letters each containing a live bullet.
    Sporta Haniya - who has thus far denied any wrongdoing - is a known Likud activist, a staunch supporter of former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and a vehement critic of the current coalition.
    She was previously documented during an anti government protest, calling on New Hope party MK Benny Begin to "walk out into the sea and die".
    Bennett himself issued a statement shortly after the death threats against his family were made, saying at the time that political disagreements, no matter how deep, should never turn violent. "We must do everything to make sure that does not happen,” Bennett said.
    "We are all human beings and can have arguments and disagreements but not bullying and threats. I am a prime minister and a politician, but I am also a father and husband and my duty is to protect my wife and children. We must tone the discourse down," he said.
    2 View gallery
    נפתלי בנט ומשפחתו
    נפתלי בנט ומשפחתו
    Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, wife Gilat and children
    (Photo: Photo: GPO)
    Yoni, in a story posted on Instagram, said the death threats were the result of incitement by right-wing supporters, who deserve to go to prison.
    Bennett has been criticized by members of the Right after he opted to join a coalition made up of parties from the left, including the Islamist Ra'am faction - which earlier this week announced it would stay in the coalition despite disagreements over the handling of riots on Temple Mount.
    Members of his Yamina party have also received threats, including his long-time political ally and Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked - who has since been assigned a special security detail.

    First published: 16:15, 05.12.22
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