Left-wing MK files complaint against minister for mocking police

MK Yoel Hasson files Ethics Committee complaint against Miri Regev for comparing law enforcement officials to villains in Purim story.

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Tzvi Lev,

Yoel Hasson
Yoel Hasson
Yoav Ari Dudkevitch/ Flash 90

MK Yoel Hasson (Zionist Union) filed a complaint with the Knesset's Ethics Committee against Culture Minister Miri Regev (Likud) after she compared law enforcement officials investigating Prime Minister Netanyahu with Bigthan and Teresh, two palace guards who plotted to depose King Ahasuerus in the Purim story.

"The police commissioner, police officers, judges, investigators and legal advisers aren’t enemies or traitors, and definitely aren’t part of a plot to ‘remove a prime minister from power." Hasson wrote, alleging that the comparison "crossed a red line".

"Therefore, I will request the Ethics Committee to impose sanctions on Minister Regev that match the severity of her words," added Hasson.

Speaking at an event in Rishon Lezion on Saturday night, Regev had alleged that officials investigating Prime Minister Netanyahu are no different than the Bigthan and Teresh duo who attempted to remove their leader through improper means.

"We read this week in the Book of Esther, there too there were gatekeepers, Bigthan and Teresh," said Regev. "They were a perfect match. They displayed statesmanship, they kept the rule of law and cared about the rule of law but deep in their pockets, they had a guillotine."

"It turned out that as soon as they did not agree with the king, they did not agree with his way of running the kingdom, all the rules disappeared, the state disappeared, the rule of law became less critical," added the minister.

Regev said that if Bigthan and Teresh "had mobile phones, they would probably be texting to each other. 'What do you say in the garden that we'll give him another two days, maybe three?' And 'It's important that you look surprised, will you?' "

Regev's comments come following last week's report publicizing a series of WhatsApp messages between Poznansky-Katz and Israel Securities Authority investigator Eran Shaham-Shavit ahead of a hearing for suspects arrested as part of the “Case 4000”investigation.

In the messages, the Israel Securities Authority official informed Poznansky-Katz of his agency’s intention to request that several suspects’ arrests be extended, telling the judge to “act surprised” when he makes the request in court.

“I’ll practice looking surprised”, replied Poznansky-Katz.

Regev came under a hail of criticism from fellow lawmakers after the comparison. "What right do you have against the gatekeepers, the people who do their work for all of us - policemen, judges, and lawyers?" asked MK Rachel Azaria (Kulanu).

Regev responded by accusing "part of the media" for "interpreting my remarks yesterday in a distorted way".