Fracas in Knesset as submarines inquiry advanced, then 2nd vote called

In a serious blow to the governing coalition, the Knesset votes to form a parliamentary commission of inquiry into the so-called submarines affair — only to have the vote immediately canceled by Knesset Speaker Yariv Levin (Likud), who says it must be conducted by name ballot.

Another vote is taking place now.

The proposal on the submarine affair was put forward by Meretz lawmaker Tamar Zandberg with the backing of the Yesh Atid-Telem party.

The case snared several close associates of Netanyahu, but not the premier himself, on suspicion that they received bribes as part of a massive graft scheme in the multi-billion-shekel state purchase of naval vessels from the German shipbuilder.

The motion was not expected to be approved after Benny Gantz’s Blue and White party said it wouldn’t back it, but in a surprise turn of events it was supported by 25 lawmakers and opposed by just 23.