Arab MK criticized after Palestinian Embassy arranges Romania trip
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Arab MK criticized after Palestinian Embassy arranges Romania trip

Lawmaker Ahmad Tibi says diplomatic visit was approved by Knesset Ethics Committee

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

Ahmed Tibi, right, meeting with Romanian lawmakers in Bucharest on March 24, 2016. (Joint List spokesperson)
Ahmed Tibi, right, meeting with Romanian lawmakers in Bucharest on March 24, 2016. (Joint List spokesperson)

Officials in Jerusalem were displeased to find that Knesset member Ahmad Tibi organized an upcoming trip to Romania via the Palestinian Embassy in Bucharest, without contacting the Israeli Embassy.

The Foreign Ministry was recently informed of Tibi’s travel arrangements by Romanian authorities, Israel Radio reported on Thursday.

Tibi, of the Joint (Arab) List, defended the trip saying he was invited by representatives of the Palestinian Federation of Romania, and that he hadn’t contacted the local Israeli Embassy because the Knesset Ethics Committee had approved his travel arrangements.

Under parliamentary regulations Any trips abroad taken by MKs that are not organized by the Knesset must by approved by the Ethics Committee.

Diplomatic officials criticized Tibi, saying his trip was a further example of the defiant attitude taken by some Arab MKs regarding Israel.

Tibi met with Romanian parliamentarians Thursday in Bucharest and accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of torpedoing the two-state solution by supporting settlement building, according to a Joint List spokesperson.

He also condemned Islamic State attacks in Turkey and said they had no connection to Islam.

Tibi, a sharp critic of Israeli government policy and outspoken supporter of the Palestinian cause, noted that it was not the first time he has traveled abroad in this manner, the report said.

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