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Proposal to ban non-Jews from election to Israeli parliament

October 28, 2017 at 12:12 pm

The ruling Israeli coalition may propose a bill in the Israeli Knesset that blocks non-Jews from being elected to the parliament, Quds Press reported on Friday. The bill would apparently prevent intervention by the Supreme Court in decisions taken by the Israeli Central Elections Committee; it is the latter which would then have sole responsibility for blocking non-Jewish candidates.

“This bill aims to return the authority and power to the Elections Committee by preventing appeals against its decision,” said its proposer, Oded Forer MK of the extreme right-ring Jewish Home party. “The Knesset has become a place for terrorists and their supporters [sic] to sit in without fear.”

This was a reference to MKs Basel Ghattas – who is now in prison – and the head of the Arab Joint-list Ayman Odeh. At least 20 per cent of Israel’s population are non-Jews; if such a bill became law it would confirm the apartheid nature of the Israeli state.

Read: Israeli officials call for punitive measures against Arab MK

“This is nothing new,” responded the former Arab MK Osama Al-Sa’di. “Several bills have been approved that target the Arab presence in the Knesset, including one which allows the rejection of candidates if they do not believe in Israel as a democratic and Jewish state.”

Speaking to Quds Press, Al-Sa’di said that this law is aimed at Arab citizens who plan to run for the Knesset. “This is an illegal, unconstitutional and undemocratic law,” he said. “It is a retention of a series of unconstitutional laws, the last of which was the law which was activated to sack Basel Ghattas.”

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