Leaders and residents of Arab-Israeli towns in the so-called Triangle, who are dubbed as the Palestinians of 1948, were angered on Wednesday after US President Donald Trump’s peace plan proposed revoking their Israeli citizenship and including their villages southeast of Haifa in a future Palestinian state.
They joined the stances of other leaders in the Arab Joint List party and the High Follow-Up Committee (HFC) Arab Citizens of Israel, who unanimously rejected the plan and took to the streets to demonstrate against it.
Qalansawe Mayor Abdulbast Salameh said moving the Triangle towns to the Palestinian state indicates that Trump’s plan is not serious.
“They decide to transfer us from one country to another without clarifying means and reasons,” he stressed, adding that this is Avigdor Lieberman’s plan.
“Lieberman was the first to talk about getting rid of us, redrawing borders from east to west and turning us into citizens of the Palestinian state. It is a colonial, arrogant and racist plan,” he stressed.
About 250,000 people reside in the Triangle Communities, which include Kafr Qara, Ar’ara, Baqa al-Gharbiya, Umm al Fahm, Qalansawe, Kafr Qasim, Tira, Kafr Bara and Jaljulia.
“These communities, which largely self-identify as Palestinian, were originally designated to fall under Jordanian control during the negotiations of the Armistice Line of 1949, but ultimately were retained by Israel for military reasons that have since been mitigated,” the proposal claims.
The Israeli army carried out the Kafr Qasim massacre in 1956 with the aim of intimidating people and deporting them to Jordan.
Later on, the Israeli government developed a plan to plunder their fertile lands and confiscated most of them.
However, its farmers continue to work in the remaining lands and produce distinct crops. They currently develop high-tech industry (Hi-Tech), have al-Qasimi Academy, which is the most significant Arab academic institution in Israel, as well as one of the most successful scientific schools in Umm al Fahm.
According to Umm al Fahm Mayor Samir Mahamid, the plan expresses the “hysterical condition of those behind it, and has no peace project or even a deal.”