Law to Strip Payments from a Current or Former Member of Knesset due to a Crime

Economic Rights
Under this law, the Knesset may withhold salary and pensions from current or former MKs declared by the Attorney General to be alleged suspects or defendants or persons convicted of crime that is punishable by at least ten years’ imprisonment, and who do not appear at a criminal trial or investigation against them, including for reasons of being outside the country. The alleged crime should have been committed in full or in part during the period in which the suspect or defendant was an MK.

The law was drafted in response to the exile of former Arab MK Dr. Azmi Bishara (Balad/Tajammoa), who left Israel in March 2007 after police announced he was suspected of giving information to Hezbollah during the Second Lebanon War. However, the state has not filed an indictment against Dr. Bishara or pointed to any clear evidence against him. These facts indicate the arbitrary nature of the law; even MKs against whom there is no clear evidence could be harmed and lose their pensions.

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