Israel Elections: Islamist Party Emerged As The ‘King Maker’

Aizbah KhanWeb Editor

24th Mar, 2021. 11:59 pm
Israel Elections: Islamist Party Emerged As The 'King Maker'

The United Arab List (Ra’am or the Islamic Movement) party has won a landslide victory in Israeli elections and entered parliament as a kingmaker.

According to the details, Mansour Abbas, the leader of the Ra’am party, did not rule out joining the Israeli government, contrary to the position of other Arab parties in the past.

“We are ready to engage Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s camp or his rival and I am not in anyone’s pocket,” Abbas told Israeli radio.

Israel’s election has so far yielded 90 results and his party has won five of the 120 seats in the lower house.

According to the report, so far neither Netanyahu nor his rival has had a clear lead in government formation and talks will be needed to form a coalition.

It should be noted that in the last Israeli election, the Ra’am Party was included in the Central Arab Joint List, but earlier this year, ideological differences arose between Mansour Abbas and his former allies and this alliance was also torn apart.

Conservative Mansour Abbas and other Arab Israelis, including communist-based parties, have long had differences.

Before the polls yesterday, he said he was ready to negotiate with Netanyahu, while Netanyahu has been sharply critical of Arab-Israeli parties throughout his political career.

However, Mansour Abbas said that it was the responsibility of the Arab leadership to stop the oppression of the Arab community by collaborating with anyone in the government.

According to state broadcasters, Netanyahu’s allies won 52 seats, while those seeking an end to his long rule won 56 seats.

Netanyahu will need the support of Mansour Abbas as well as religious-nationalist Naftali Bennett, who has seven seats, to win a 61-seat majority.

Such an alliance is not guaranteed to last for governance.

Netanyahu’s allies include members of the far-right religious Zionist bloc, a fierce opponent of Arab parties.

According to reports, the chances of an alliance between the Raam Party and the Zionist religious party are slim.

Netanyahu’s camp is ideologically divided, which could make it difficult for an individual to include Mansour Abbas in the coalition.

Netanyahu’s group includes the secularist party, led by Yair Lipid, the right-wing religious party, which has split from Netanyahu, and Mansour Abbas’s rival.

Tel Aviv University analyst Ajmal Jamal said Abbas had not drawn a red line and could form an alliance with a group that understood his interests better.

He said he would hold talks with all parties to get their demands met.

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