Right-wing political alliance threatens further inequality for Arab citizens

Date: 2019/03/05
Worrying cross-party partnership may negatively affect Arab citizens of Israel.

A recent alliance between Jewish Home and the right-wing Jewish Power (Otzma Yehudit) deals a further blow to the Arab community ahead of the April 9 elections.



Announced last week, PM Netanyahu has received strong criticism from both reform and conservative Jewish community leaders, who have denounced the move as unthinkable. In a bid to secure a fifth parliamentary term, the Prime Minister engineered the alliance  in exchange for ministry positions, which would see Education, Housing and two security seats go to Otzma Yehudit members, followers of Rabbi Kahane.The American-Israeli was renowned for his racist rhetoric, calling for the expulsion of Arabs from the country, an expansion of Jewish settlements in occupied territories and a ban on inter-marriage.



Leader of the Kach Party and prohibited from running in the Knesset in 1988, Rabbi Kahane provides the ideological framework for Otzma Yehudit, now led by Michael Ben Ari, who has been banned from the US under counter-terrorism legislation. Subject to an administrative order on suspicion of attempting to bomb buses in Hebron, Kahane founded the militant Jewish Defence League and was arrested over 60 times for provocations against Arabs.Founded by his former colleagues and disciples, there is now a petition in the Knesset to ban members of Otzma Yehudit from running in the upcoming elections due to inciting racism against Arab citizens.



Previous Mossawa analysis highlights the stark inequalities faced by Arab citizens in Israel, particularly in the fields of education and housing. The Prime Minister’s latest bid to further consolidate his power is a heavy blow to Arabs across the country, faced with the prospect of heightened racism in decision-making spheres.



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