Israeli Knesset OKs first reading of controversial suspension bill
Israel’s Knesset approves suspending lawmakers accused of backing “terrorism” and seen to target Arab MPs as PM Benjamin Netanyahu orders Palestinian bodies held by the military not to be returned.
Fifty-nine lawmakers voted for the bill, widely seen as targeting the Arab-led bloc after three of its members met the families of Palestinian attackers.
The bloc accounts for 13 of Knesset’s 120 members, making it the chamber’s third-largest grouping.
The bill would give parliament the power to strip any lawmaker of the right to vote on draft legislation. It needs to pass a second and third reading in the Knesset before becoming a law.
Zouheir Bahloul, and Arab legislator, accused Netanyahu’s right-wing coalition of “quietly stealing Arab members’ right to a democratic discourse.”