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Legislative in Israel: Coalition of Arab Parties Woo Jewish Electorate

2019-09-16T10:11:09.216Z

In Israel, citizens return to the polls on Tuesday for legislative elections. If the Arab population represents 20% of the population, its participation is much lower than the rest of the population ...


Mevaseret is a small town with a predominantly Jewish population on the outskirts of Jerusalem. Yet it is here that representatives of the Unified List, the coalition of essentially Arab parties, have chosen to campaign for the Israeli parliamentary elections. Faced with the resignation of the Arab population, this list wants to grapple the Jewish electorate rebuffed by the very right-wing drift of society.

"It gives me hope that, perhaps, we can build a kind of new political movement in Israel that would make room for Jews and Arabs to live next with a better partnership between communities," said a young activist . "In the face of hatred, racism and division, it's unity you need, all kinds of units, the Unified List is a good way to do that," said one of his comrades.

A common banner

To capture these voices, Ofer Cassif and the other candidates do not count on big meetings. They will fetch Jewish votes one by one. "To convince people to vote for us, the best way is what we just did here, sit down with a few people, talk to them and try to explain to them why we are better," describes Oser Cassif. , candidate of the Unified List in legislative elections. "Among the Arabs, it's totally different, if there's a hesitation in the Arab electorate, it's not between the Unified List and the other parties, it's between voting for the Unified List or not vote at all. "

After their divisions and failure in the April elections, the Israeli Arab parties managed to find themselves under a common banner, as in 2015. They hope to find a better dynamic. But once elected, life is not easy for these deputies often stigmatized in the Knesset.

"They can not do their job normally, their bills are rejected, there are several examples of laws that are submitted by Palestinian MPs but have nothing to do with the Palestinian issue, which concern everyone, but they are rejected and Jewish MPs copy and paste and the law passes, "said Gil Naveh, the spokesman for Amnesty International in Israel. A situation which, according to these deputies, deters a large part of the Arab population from mobilizing to vote.

Source: france24

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