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Israeli political opportunists are using an Arab party to oust Netanyahu

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07.06.2021

Last week, Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid told President Reuven Rivlin that he had formed a coalition government to replace the administration of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the aftermath of the fourth inconclusive General Election in just over two years. Netanyahu is Israel's longest-serving prime minister.

The new coalition is the strangest in Israel's history, not only because it includes politicians from the far right to the far left, but also because it includes a party of Palestinian citizens of Israel, the United Arab List — Ra'am — headed by Mansour Abbas. If the coalition is approved by the Knesset (parliament), this will be the first time that Palestinian Arab MKs are part of an Israeli government. Naftali Bennet, the head of the far-right Yamina party, will be the first prime minister of the proposed coalition government, which will consist of eight parties, including Ra'am.

"We have reached a critical mass of agreements in various fields that serve the interest of Arab society and that provide solutions for the burning issues in Arab society," said Mansour Abbas following his agreement to join the coalition. The "burning issues" to be resolved are "planning, the housing crisis and, of course, fighting violence and organised crime [among Palestinians in Israel]."

READ: Israel domestic security warns of violence as Netanyahu faces unseating

I am sure that Abbas knows very well that the pledges he has received to solve these issues are unlikely to be fulfilled. "Our red lines are our rights, whether national or civilian rights," he said during the election campaign in March. "We may not be able to achieve them all, but we will not abandon them." I doubt that he will be able to achieve any of........

© Middle East Monitor


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