MK Ofer Cassif Indicted for ‘Assault of a Cop’ in the Occupied Territories

Israel’s Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara has filed an indictment against Communist lawmaker Ofer Cassif (Hadash-Ta’al) for “assaulting a police officer” two years ago, Zo Haderech reported Thursday.

The lawmaker is alleged to have struck an officer in May 2022 after being prevented from participating in a protest against a Supreme Court ruling ordering the eviction of villages in the occupied Palestinian territories. Cassif was trying to get to a demonstration against the eviction of Palestinians from their homes in Masafer Yatta in the West Bank’s South Hebron Hills by car, but was blocked from doing so by the police, resulting in a scuffle in which Cassif allegedly slapped a cop but he has denied attacking the officer.

MK Ofer Cassif at the Knesset with photos of the Israeli hostages in Gaza Strip. He demands the end of the war at the plenum, Wednesday, February 28, 2024 (Photo: Zo Haderech)

Last month, far-right lawmaker Oded Forer (Yisrael Beitenu) began the unprecedented process to impeach Cassif and remove him from the Knesset. However, during a Feb. 19 vote in the Knesset plenum, 85 MKs voted to oust Cassif, just below the 90 needed in the 120-member legislature. Opposition leader Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid Party and War Cabinet Minister Benny Gantz’s National Unity Party did not back the initiative. In October, Cassif was suspended from the Knesset for 45 days.

MK Ron Katz (Yesh Atid) on Wednesday, February 21, sent a letter to the Attorney General in which he demands, together with MKs Meir Cohen and Mickey Levy from his opposition Yesh Atid Party, that the legal proceedings against MK Cassif be sped up. “MK Ofer Cassif should be removed from the Knesset, and it is possible to be removed from the Knesset, it just needs to be done the right way. Cassif must be impeached following the attack on a police officer, regardless of the fact that he signed a despicable petition calling for Israel to be prosecuted for genocide,” said MK Katz.