A delegation of Israeli lawmakers on Wednesday stormed out of an international gathering of parliamentarians after facing a tongue lashing, heckling and resolutions critical of Jerusalem at the annual meeting.
Likud MK Sharren Haskel, Yesh Atid MK Haim Jelin, Zionist Union MKs Yossi Yonah and Nachman Shai, and Knesset Secretary Yardena Meller-Horowitz complained about mistreatment at the Inter-Parliament Union assembly in St. Petersburg, Russia, including being heckled while trying to speak at the event.
While the lawmakers said they left to protest the body passing a series of resolutions that included calls for Israel to release two Palestinians convicted of participating in deadly terror attacks, the walkout occurred shortly after they were yelled at by a fellow lawmaker.
A video circulated on social media showed the speaker of the Kuwaiti National Assembly, Marzouq Al-Ghanim, shouting at the Israeli MKs that they were “child killers” and to “get out of the hall” after one of them addressed the summit. The delegation was then seen leaving the room.
“I want to respond to what the representative of this brutal occupying parliament said, a representative of the most dangerous form of terrorism, that is state terror,” Ghanim said. “There is a parable that everyone in the world knows — if you do not feel shame then do as you please. So I say to you get out of here, occupier. If you have an atom of dignity get out of here, you occupier, child killers.”
The video then appears to show the Israeli delegation exiting the hall. It was not clear if they left immediately after Ghanim’s outburst or some time later.
Zionist Union MK Ksenia Svetlova said Thursday she was proud of the MKs for “defending the country’s honour” by leaving the hall.
The Israeli MKs said they walked out not because of Ghanim, but rather because the gathering approved a range of anti-Israel resolutions including a call for the release of convicted terrorists Marwan Barghouti and Ahmed Saadat.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that it was not involved in arrangements for the event and that it is the Knesset that decides which MKs to send.