Tibi vs. Bibi: Apologize to the Arabs

Radical Arab MK says Netanyahu's 'warning' of mass Arab voter turnout 'attacked democracy,' demands apology to Israeli Arabs.

Hezki Baruch, Ari Yashar,

Ahmed Tibi
Ahmed Tibi
Hadas Parush/Flash 90

Radical Arab MK Ahmed Tibi of the joint Arab list is demanding that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu apologize for "warning" on elections day that Arab citizens of Israel were turning out en masse to the polling stations.

"For the first time a prime minister in Israel says something like this about the elections process, something that is a basic right of a government that terms itself democratic," Tibi told Channel 2. "The prime minister called on Jewish citizens to go out and vote, because 'Arab citizens are taking over the country and filling the ballot boxes.' That's a serious thing."

What Netanyahu actually wrote on Facebook on elections day is "the right-wing rule is in danger. Arab voters are moving en masse to the ballot boxes. Leftist NGOs are bringing them in buses." Responding to Tibi's earlier charges that he was "inciting," Netanyahu claimed that his opposition was to the way foreign-funded NGOs were interfering in Israel's democratic process by trying to boost the number of Arab votes to benefit the left, not in the fact that Arab citizens were voting.

Tibi, who in the past was an adviser to Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) founder and arch terrorist Yasser Arafat from 1993 to 1999, said the fact that Netanyahu is prime minister makes the statements more serious.

"I speak in the name of all Arab citizens - it wasn't Avigdor Liberman who said it, but rather an Israeli prime minister, who says on the one hand that we are a democratic state, but also attacks the basic right on which democracy is founded," claimed Tibi.

The Arab MK called on Netanyahu to apologize before the Arab public, saying "you didn't just harm the Arab citizens."

Regarding the success of the joint Arab list in achieving 13 mandates thanks to the large Arab voter turnout, he noted "there's no doubt that if we had nine mandates in a center-left government we would have more influence than 16 mandates in a rightist government, but there is a statement of unity in the party here."

"In the opposition we will be with Yesh Atid, Meretz and the Zionist Union (of Labor and Hatnua - ed.), but we will be a unified party that will struggle against racism," Tibi said. "We are ready to cooperate on financial and social issues and improving the situation of the citizen."

Tibi late last year traveled to Belgium to urge the parliament to pass sanctions against Israel, after traveling to London to push for a non-binding vote recognizing the Palestinian Authority (PA) as the "state of Palestine" just a month earlier - that vote later passed. In international media he has attacked the Jewish State Law which enshrines Israel's status as the state of the Jewish people in national law.

He also exhibited historical revisionism in claiming Muslims were the "true owners" of the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism and the location of the First and Second Temples in ancient Israel, centuries before Islam was created. Just this January he hoisted the PLO terrorist organization flag on the Mount.




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