Knesset Committee votes in favor of stripping MK Ghatas of immunity
An Israeli parliamentary committee on Wednesday voted unanimously in favor of stripping Bassal Ghatas, a member of the United Arab List party, of his immunity. The decision now goes to the Knesset plenum that will debate the issue and hold a vote on Thursday afternoon. Ghatas was caught smuggling 12 small cellular phones to Palestinian prisoners at Israel's Ketziot jail who were convicted of terrorism and other security offenses. Israel's deputy attorney general said at the committee meeting that there was firm evidence against Ghatas, but that it was necessary to remove his immunity in order to search his house and offices as well as to arrest him for trial. Ghatas has informed the Knesset Speaker that he will not voluntarily give up his immunity.