Odeh: PM Invented 'Blood Libel' Against Arabs

In letter to Attorney General, Ayman Odeh demands Prime Minister be prosecuted for defamation and incitement against Arabs.

Hezki Baruch ,

MK Ayman Odeh
MK Ayman Odeh
Yonatan Sindel / Flash 90

Joint List chairman Ayman Odeh demanded on Tuesday that Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein prosecute Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for defaming his party and inciting violence against Arabs. 

Odeh's appeal to the Attorney General is a response to Netanyahu's speech at the opening of the Knesset's winter session on Monday evening, in which he characterized the Balad faction as "communists with a trail of Islamic State flags in their wake."

Balad is one of three Arab parties which joined forces to form the Joint List prior to Israeli elections in March 2015. 

In a letter to Weinstein, Odeh argued that "instead of spreading lies, the Prime Minister should have shown support for Knesset members from the Joint List, who strongly condemn the ISIS terrorist organization and repeatedly voice their opposition to bloodshed and the killing of innocent people."

"In light of the tense situation suffered by the region in general and Israeli society in particular, the Prime Minister's remarks fall within the realm of incitement to racism, and perpetuating false stereotypes." 

This is especially true, Odeh contended, "given the fact that MKs of the Joint List represent the overwhelming majority of the Arab public in Israel."

"Instead of taking responsibility for the situation and danger we're all in, the Prime Minister chooses to manipulate the Knesset stage to invent a blood libel and incite against an entire population," Odeh said, after sending the letter to the Attorney General. 

It is "hard to see this as anything but a deliberate attempt to increase the flames of hatred so rampant in the streets," Odeh added. "The Prime Minister throws mud to escape his responsibility for the situation and the inescapable conclusion that his leadership led us here."