MK Walid Taha of the United Arab List has informed the government that his four-MK-strong party will no longer be voting in the Knesset, nor will it be participating in Knesset committee discussions, “until further notice.”
It appears that the United Arab List (UAL) has been offended by overtures made by Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and Defense Minister Benny Gantz to the predominantly Arab Joint List party, in attempt to garner their support in key Knesset votes and thus to free the coalition of dependency on the UAL and possibly eject the UAL from the government entirely.
Earlier on Sunday, Radio Mekan reporter Amit Segal quoted UAL MK Mazen Ghainem in threats he made on the government. “There’s no love lost between [UAL head] Mansour Abbas and the new government,” Ghainem said. “Bennett and Netanyahu? They’re both bad.”
Ghainem also alleged that “the entire Israeli media is mobilized in favor of the government.”
Asked to comment on the recent failure of the government to pass an extension to the Citizenship Law, which would bar Israeli Arabs from applying for citizenship or permanent residency for their PA-Arab spouses, Ghainem said, “This is a racist law. Twenty thousand families are suffering because of it. I oppose it. I abstained on the vote because I didn’t want to topple the government, but it is clear that we have red lines.”
Ghainem then issued a clear threat to the government: “If the government hits Gaza [in response to Hamas firing on Israel, or any other offense], I will topple the government.”