Local activist files suit over Netanyahu heckling incident

Rae Abileah, an El Granada–based activist with Code Pink, has filed suit against four bystanders she says attacked her after she heckled Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his address to Congress in Washington, D.C., in May.

Abileah, 28, filed suit in the District of Columbia’s Superior Court against four unnamed people for $500,000 in compensatory damages and $500,000 in punitive damages for assault, battery and false imprisonment.

During Netanyahu’s May 24 speech, Abileah unfurled a banner that read “Occupying Land is Indefensible” and shouted, “No more occupation. Stop Israeli war crimes!”

The unnamed defendants “roughed her up” in the congressional gallery following the outburst, according to the complaint, which also claims a criminal investigation into the attack is pending. Abileah is one of her organization’s most outspoken activists, and has taken part in numerous highly visible protests.