Balad MK to be indicted over Syria visit
Attorney General Menachem Mazuz said yesterday he is filing an indictment against MK Said Naffaa (Balad) for illegally visiting an enemy state, abetting an illegal visit to an enemy state and contacting a foreign agent, over his visit to Syria in September 2007.
The MK "knowingly illegally departed for Syria, without the legally required permission of the interior minister or prime minister, and knowingly assisted some 280 people to depart illegally for an enemy state," states the indictment.
The group refers to Druze religious officials for whom Naffaa had requested permission to visit Syria. However, when permission was refused, Naffaa organized the visit himself. The indictment also alleges that on that visit, Naffaa secretly met with Talal Naji, deputy secretary-general of the Democrat Front for the Liberation of Palestine, who organized a meeting with Hamas' politburo chief Khaled Meshal.
"The following day, a Meshal associate arrived at the hotel of the accused and drove him to the meeting," the indictment states. "The accused visited Meshal's office, and received a present ... the accused knowingly sought to contact Mehshal and visited his office, establishing contact with a foreign agent without any reasonable explanation."
MK Naffaa said in response that the attorney general's decision was "bewildering."
"The attorney general decided to close all the cases against all other MKs who visited countries considered enemy states, and decided to prosecute me alone," the MK said.
"I intend to fight the decisions with all available means. What I was doing was an inseparable part of my duties as a member of the Knesset and a public representative," said Naffaa.