Thousands of Jews and Arabs protested in central Tel Aviv, last night (Saturday, February 1), against US President Donald Trump’s “Deal of the Century.” The demonstrators gathered in Dizengoff Square and marched from there to Ibn Gvirol Avenue. Following the procession, a rally was held where speakers included Joint List MK Aida Touma-Sliman, Darwish Rabi (Hadash) Mayor of Jaljulya, Hadash union activist Maysam Jaljuli, well know author Yehoshua Sobol and Peace Now CEO Shaked Morag. The protest was organized by Hadash, the Communist Party of Israel, Peace Now, the Geneva Initiative, Combatants for Peace, the Parents Circle Families Forum, Standing Together, A Land for All and other anti-occupation movements and grassroots organizations.
The CPI observed that “The true ‘Deal of the Century’ is a prime minister accused of corruption and a president under an impeachment trial attempting to save each other through a dangerous political maneuver that will set military rule over the Palestinian people in the occupied territories for generations.” The CPI reiterated its consistent and well-known position that “Only recognition of a Palestinian state, its people and its borders, and the end of the occupation is a long-overdue international obligation and a positive step towards peace. All states must now formally recognize a sustainable Palestinian state being established contiguous with the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, demanding the end of the settlements policy and a just resolution of the Palestinian refugee question.”
Joint List chairman, MK Odeh (Hadash) said that the four parties comprising the list will remain united in the upcoming March 2020 election. “We played an important role in preventing Netanyahu from forming a government and in averting his receiving immunity. We have made it half way there. Now we have another election. We promise our public to stay united as the Joint List,” Odeh says in a statement.
“The upcoming election will be the swan song of the indicted resident of Balfour Street,” added Odeh on Twitter, referring to the prime minister, whose residence is on Balfour Street in Jerusalem. “We will conclude them with an historic achievement of 15 seats,” he said.
According to the poll, if elections were held today, Blue & White would lead the field winning 34 seats in the 120 Knesset, with the Likud just behind it with 33 seats. These poll results gives each of the two large parties one more seat than they respectively won in the September election. According to the poll, the Joint List will remain the third largest parliamentary faction in the Knesset with 13 seats (its current representation), while Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu will also retains its present strength, 8 seats.
One of the two Israeli Communist demonstrators injured at Kafr Qaddum is evacuated by Palestinians, last Friday October 4. (Photo: Zo Haderech)
During the campaign before the last general elections in April, billboards went up throughout Arab communities and towns in the Galilee urging voters to boycott the vote. Many residents assumed the ads, which did not identify their sponsors, were an initiative of political forces in the Arab community such the Islamic Movement’s Northern Branch, which traditionally boycotts Israel’s national elections.
However, a Channel 12 news inquiry broadcast on Friday, September 6, revealed that the campaign was very likely commissioned and financed by right-wing Jewish settlers who hoped to significantly decrease Arab turnout at the polls.
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein had Joint List leader MK Ayman Odeh (Hadash) forcibly removed from the Knesset chamber on Wednesday, September 11, during the debate before a vote on the contentious bill that would have allowed cameras to be deployed in polling stations during the general elections on Tuesday, September 17.
Hadash MK Ofer Cassif placed responsibility for the escalation of violence between Israel and Hezbollah on Sunday, September 1, at the doorstep of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calling him “the serial criminal from Balfour Street.”
Cassif said “Netanyahu and his servants are responsible” for the recent clash, adding they mean to “occupy the seat of power with blood and to ensure the criminal [Netanyahu] will escape prison.”
Joint List leader, MK Ayman Odeh (Hadash) agreed saying, “We will not be silent when the cannons roar” and warned that a further war “will not bring security, only death, destruction and victims on both sides.”
A large majority (76%) of those surveyed supported Hadash MK Ayman Odeh’s declaration last Friday, August 23, that he would join a moderate-center government; 65% of those asked expressed their full support for the Joint List joining a coalition headed by Kahol-Lavan (Blue & White); and 20% responded they neither support nor oppose the such a move.
Youssef Makladeh, the CEO of Statnet, told Maariv: “This isn’t new; past surveys have indicated that the Arab community in Israel is more interested in more pragmatic leadership that will work towards solving more acute issues, such as curbing the spread of violence, [achieving] building permits [for Arab towns], [developing local] infrastructure and sewage management [for their places of residence].” Makladeh added, “For the first time in a decade, an Arab leader has thrown the ball into the court of the Jewish parties.”
Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh is prepared to recommend that Kahol Lavan’s Benny Gantz form a government, and that the united slate of Joint List would be willing to join a center-left coalition, he told in a long interview published by the Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper Friday morning.
MK Odeh’s comments drew ire from across the Zionist political spectrum, ranging from Kahol Lavan to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud. In the interview, Odeh formulated a list of demands with regard to the end of the occupation of the Palestinian territories, welfare issues and Arab public needs. If Kahol Lavan accepts these terms, it would prepare the grounds for Joint List to join the government, for the first time in Israeli history.
The march was organized after a 17-year-old from the Arab city of Tamra was stabbed Friday afternoon, July 26, outside Tel Aviv’s Beit Dror shelter, after moving there to escape family pressure. According to the staff of Beit Dror, before collapsing the teenager identified the assailant as his brother.