Mansour Abbas
Mansour Abbas David Cohen/Flash90

MK Mansour Abbas, chairman of the United Arab List (Ra'am), has expressed hope that the new government will last.

In an interview with 103 FM Radio, Abbas said, "We started this path with the hope that the process we are leading will bring people closer together and bring calm. We want people to live in mutual peace and security, in cooperation and tolerance."

"All of Ra'am is in the coalition today. There was an isolated incident on the issue of the Negev, and we are continuing to close the gap on these issues. If we argue about everything, there's no question that this coalition will break apart."

"We know that there are those who want to incite and bring down the government," Abbas added. "Ra'am in the meantime is continuing to act with statesmanship. We are part of the coalition. I think that the government is responsible and knows how to manage things well, so that there will not be an escalation and deterioration. We are leading a process that has the support of 70% of the Arab population."

Regarding the "flag parade" scheduled to be held Tuesday evening in Jerusalem, Abbas said: "We oppose every action which does not aim to draw people closer and to express an opinion. Anyone following this parade knows its purpose. My opinions on this issue are known. I hope that the police and the authorities will act with wisdom and know how to prevent all conflict there."

"The question is how do we pass the parade without any of its dangerous symptoms: Everything that happens in Jerusalem, especially in the Old City, has effects on the entire region. We heard threats from Hamas; I hope that this will pass without an escalation, but Jerusalem is a sensitive city."

When asked about former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Abbas said: "There is no doubt that he is a strong person who is trying to remain on the scene, and he is challenging the entire system, including the coalition. We did not speak during the swearing-in ceremony."

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