Likud MK Hazan calls disabled lawmaker half man & # 39;

Likud MK Oren Hazan on Monday took a fire when he called the handicapped Meretz legislator Ilan Gilon "half a person".

Hazan later said that he is not referring to Gilon's disability.

The remark came during a stormy Knesset debate on legislation that makes public funding for the arts dependent on & loyalty & # 39; would see.

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Gilon criticized Cultural Minister Miri Regev, also from the Likud party, on the stage when Hazan reached her in defense.

Gilon and Hazan then exchanged words before the Likud-backbencher said: "If you were not half a person, I would respond to you."

Gilon responded by Hazan & # 39; the Golem of Prague & # 39; to brand.

Knesset member Ilan Gilon of the Meretz party. (Flash90 / File)

The Likud MK, who was punished in the past for mocking a disabled legislator, insisted that his insult was not a joke in the state of the leftist legislature.

"My remarks refer to his ways, and if my statements were interpreted differently, accept my apology," said Hazan.

Gilon, who had polio as a child, has difficulty walking without assistance and often uses a wheelchair.

Hazans remark withdrew from opposition MK's, which described the lawmaker's words as "disgusting" and "repugnant." "If he is not thrown out of the Likud in the next hour – then this is the true face of the party, the way they want to lead Israel, Revolting," wrote Zionist Union MK Stav Shaffir on Twitter.

"Let me remind you that this revolting MK also mocked my friend Karin Elharar because of her disability, how disgusting can you be?" Added Zionist Union MK Mickey Rosenthal.

Since his election to the Knesset two years ago, Hazan has publicly mocked a disabled colleague and has been temporarily banned from the Knesset twice due to various misdeeds. In January, the ethical committee of Knesset Hazan issued the maximum possible sentence – unprecedented in all years of the Knesset – for a series of incidents in which he insulted co-legislators.

In November 2015, during a nocturnal vote, Hazan shouted at wheelchair-bound Yesh Atid MK Karin Elharar, "Do you need Issawi to help you?" Elharar suffers from muscular dystrophy.

Hazan had accused her of illegal double-casting after asking Meretz MK Issawi Frej to help her cast her vote in the plenary.

Recently he told a female legislator in a Knesset committee meeting that she was too ugly to be a prostitute.

Hazan's father Yehiel Hazan lost his Knesset chair after being caught by casting a double vote in the plenum and then trying to remove a voting computer from a Knesset store to hide evidence of the action.

The Knesset on Monday evening will vote on the first reading of a controversial bill that would allow the Minister of Culture to withhold money for cultural organizations that "work against the principles of the state & # 39;

The so-called Culture Loyalty Law would enable the government to raise funds from organizations or events with one of the following five issues: denial that the state of Israel is a Jewish, democratic country; inciting racism, violence or terror; support for the armed struggle or terrorist acts against Israel by a hostile state or a terrorist group; mark the Israeli Independence Day as a day of mourning; or any act of destruction or physical degradation of the flag or any state symbol.

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