The police intervention following rioting on the Temple Mount in the Al Aqsa Mosque on Friday and the stoning of buses transporting Jewish passengers this morning on their way to pray at the Kotel Western Wall has put pressure on the Ra’am United Arab List to leave the government coalition.
On Friday, Ra’am MK Mazen Ghanaim has threatened to quit the government coalition following police action and today the Mufti of Israel’s Islamic Movement Sheikh Mohammed Salame Hassan called on Ra’am to leave the coalition “for the sake of Al Aksa.” Other leading figures in Ra’am also called over the weekend for the party to leave the coalition government, which is still reeling from the resignation of Yamina MK Idit Silman, which left it without its 61 MK majority in the 120-seat Knesset.
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Ghanaim sent a letter to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on the matter and was interviewed on the subject on Channel 13 News. He said, ‘I do not want to see the sights that I saw at Al Aqsa yesterday. It’s the straw that broke the camel’s back. If the Israeli government does not know that this is a red line, then that’s its problem. I will see myself as independent on everything and I will vote according to my conscience. We wanted a government of change and to be a legitimate player in politics but to my regret they are pushing us out. “
Ra’am party chairman Mansour Abbas is not interested at this stage in quitting the coalition and is currently conveying conciliatory messages. But growing opposition within his own party may force him to respond if the escalation in Jerusalem continues. Abbas told Channel 12 News last night, “Arab society wants to give this government a chance. Nobody expects the Joint Arab List to join the coalition about hey do have interests and they want to promote certain issues in Arab society, and there are talks with them. “
Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on April 17, 2022.
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