Meyer Habib is once again in the sights of La France Insoumise. Several elected officials from Jean-Luc Mélenchon's party relayed, on Friday January 19, a video from the LR deputy for the 8th constituency of French people established outside France, in which he describes the "population" of Gaza as a "cancer". This video is an extract from an interview with Meyer Habib on Radio J, dated October 20, 2023. That is, 13 days after Hamas' surprise attack on Israel on October 7.
In this extract Meyer Habib reacts to a question regarding the fact that Egypt “refuses for the moment to welcome (the) Palestinians”. To which he responds: “Because today they know the cancer that is this population, to whom we have given everything. Israel has left the Gaza Strip. (...) The reality is that they want everything. (...) The Israelis, let them work, they know what to do.”
These comments, which date back more than three months, had gone unnoticed until this Friday. Several elected officials from La France Insoumise (LFI), including Manuel Bompard, national coordinator of the party, said they were shocked. "What a shame ! The president of the National Assembly Yaël Braun-Pivet and the president of the LR group Olivier Marleix must condemn these comments,” he demanded on X.
Before being followed, ten minutes later, by Hadrien Clouet, LFI deputy for Haute-Garonne, describing Meyer Habib as a “rabid lunatic” who “assumes and claims (...) the genocidal risk” in Gaza.
This is not the first time that rebels have attacked Meyer Habib. On December 21, 39 deputies from the environmentalist, PS and LFI groups requested in a letter to the President of the National Assembly the lifting of their colleague's parliamentary immunity for comments made in the chamber on Gaza. In question, a sentence pronounced by the deputy of the 8th constituency of French people established outside France during the questions session to the government.
“While the Minister (of Foreign Affairs Catherine Colonna at the time, Editor's note) was invited to react to the death of a Quai d'Orsay agent following Israeli bombings on a residential building housing civilians, MP Meyer Habib distinctly and twice pronounced the words: “And it’s not over!” The authors of the letter considered that these comments could “akin to the apology of war crimes”. Left-wing elected officials then demanded “a heavy disciplinary sentence” against Meyer Habib. As well as the meeting of the commission responsible for article 26 of the application of the Constitution “so that it examines the lifting of the parliamentary immunity of Mr. Meyer Habib”.
A request quickly brushed aside by Yaël Braun-Pivet. The President of the National Assembly then responded that the constitutional rules did not allow her to lift immunity: “the remarks made by a parliamentarian in the hemicycle of the Assembly are covered, in accordance with article 26 of the Constitution, by the principle of irresponsibility, which has an absolute character and which no procedure allows to “lift””.
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Remember that rebellious elected officials have, for their part, also been singled out since the start of the conflict between Hamas and Israel, particularly for their refusal to qualify Hamas as a “terrorist” group. LFI MP Ersilia Soudais was also singled out for sneering in a program last November when discussing the Hamas attack of October 7, which interfered with the broadcast in the National Assembly of the pro-Palestinian film Yallah Gaza.