The Knesset's Ethics Committee on Monday decided to reprimand Knesset Member Ahmad Tibi (United Arab List Ta'al) alone for his visit to Libya and his meeting with Muammar Gaddafi.
The committee decided not to sanction the five other MKs who participated in the meeting as it was the first time such a complaint was made against them. The debate on the actual visit was referred to the Knesset plenum.
Three complaints were filed in reference to the visit of six MKs to Libya last April. One complaint addressed a visit in an enemy country, while the other two concerned an overseas trip funded by an outside source without the Ethics Committee's approval.
Gaddafi and the Arab MKs (Photo courtesy of Panet website)
The committee decided to reprimand Tibi as his record shows he made overseas trips in the past without being granted a permit. MK Arieh Eldad (National Union) was in the minority and said all six MKs should have been sanctioned.
The Knesset's legal advisor, Eyal Inon, presented a legal overview indicating that Libya was not among the countries prohibited for Israeli citizens. The committee therefore decided that the matter of a visit to Libya was not in its jurisdiction and rejected a complaint filed by the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel.
Regarding the lack of approval, the committee determined that the MKs violated the committee's decision from 2002 and discussed each MKs case separately. It was decided not MKs Afu Aghbaria, Talab El-Sana, Mohammad Barakeh, Henin Zoabi and Jamal Zahalka will not be sanctioned.
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