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Jewish Home’s Naftali Bennett punched at conference on peace

JTA

2 weeks ago

<em>Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett in 2013. Photo by The Israel Project</em>

Israeli Economy Minister Naftali Bennett in 2013. Photo by The Israel Project

Israel’s economy minister, Naftali Bennett, was punched following his speech at a peace conference in Tel Aviv.

Some audience members rushed Bennett, who heads the right-wing Jewish Home party, after he finished speaking on Tuesday afternoon; he was punched in the back by one. His bodyguards quickly removed Bennett from the room, according to The Jerusalem Post.

Bennett had been heckled throughout the speech, including being called “murderer” and “fascist,” the Post reported. He had addressed fighting terror organizations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

He was one of the few speakers invited to the conference, which was sponsored by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, outside the left wing.

“There are people here who thought that we need to speak with [former Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser] Arafat,” Haaretz publisher Amos Shocken reportedly said while trying to calm the audience during Bennett’s speech. “It can’t be that they won’t let Bennett be heard.”

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