Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

In Unprecedented Incitement Against Arabs, Netanyahu Says They ‘Want to Destroy Israel’

In Unprecedented Incitement Against Arabs, Netanyahu Says They ‘Want to Destroy Israel’

Thursday, 12 September, 2019 - 08:00
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks on after delivering a statement in Ramat Gan, near Tel Aviv, Israel September 10, 2019. Reuters/Amir Cohen

Israeli right-wing activists have started an unprecedented incitement campaign on social media against Arabs.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also participated in the campaign and called on voters, through his Facebook page, to avoid a left-wing government of “Arabs who want to destroy us all – women, children, and men – and allow a nuclear Iran that will kill us.”

The Premier was later forced to remove the post, following uproar against him even among some right-wing forces.

Observers agreed that Netanyahu's recent actions were a result of his extreme nervousness since his chances to win the upcoming elections are the lowest ever. They said he is using all means possible in this electoral battle to avoid being jailed.

Meanwhile, Netanyahu also tried to avoid being filmed by Joint List party leader Ayman Odeh who used his mobile phone camera to confront Netanyahu closely.

Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein was outraged by Odeh's move and got him removed from the hall. He also assigned a bodyguard to protect Netanyahu inside the Knesset so that no other deputy could approach him.

This has taken place on Wednesday during the second failed discussion, initiated by the Likud Party. The session was held to discuss a bill that requires placing cameras in the ballot box during the parliamentary elections, scheduled to be held next Tuesday.

For the second time in two days, the Knesset’s General Assembly dropped the draft law, which received only 58 votes from the required 61 votes.

A total of 62 MKs deliberately abstained from voting.

The bill was drafted by Justice Minister Amir Ohana and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri to monitor ballot boxes in Arab towns, claiming that they are known for electoral fraud.

They both ignored the fact that the fraud revealed by police in 29 boxes was mostly for Likud’s interest.

The bill was opposed by Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit and Legal Adviser to the Knesset Eyal Yinon, asserting that it was unconstitutional.

All opposition parties opposed the bill, including Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s right-wing party, which said it stimulates chaos in the elections.

However, Netanyahu attended the discussion session during which he delivered a speech inciting against Arabs and attacking Lieberman at the same time.

Editor Picks