Arab Member Of Coalition: ‘I Will Dismantle Coalition If Israel Attacks Our Brothers In Gaza’

New Knesset member Mazen Ghanaim seen at the Knesset , ahead of the opening Knesset session of the new government, on April 05, 2021. Photo by Olivier Fitousi / Flash90

The Bennett government, which is relying on a sliver-thin majority including the Arab party Ra’am, continues to demonstrate its weakness and susceptibility to extortionate demands.

On Sunday the Arab party announced that if within a day the Bedouin directorate (which administrates the needs of the Bedouin in the Negev) would not be transferred from the Prime Minister’s Office to the Labor and Social Affairs Ministry, they would leave the government.

Irrespective of the goal of such a move, the audacity demonstrated by the 4-seat party shows that it feels it has the power to make almost any demand.

Predictably, the government within a few hours authorized the demand without questioning or making any reservations.

The Ra’am party however was not satisfied with this and demanded that the government stop negotiating with its rival the Joint Arab list to receive their support for budget votes, a factor which would weaken the negotiating status of Ra’am.

If this was not enough, MK Mazen Gneim, a member of Ra’am which is part of the government, said that “there is no love story between [Ra’am leader] Mansour Abbas and the new government, since “both Bennett and Netanyahu are bad.”

Gneim added that the Unification Law which his party had been forced to support in order not to topple the government was a “racist law” and “20,000 families are suffering due to it.”

When asked what would happen if Israel responded to Hamas rockets with military action against Gaza, Gneim answered that “I will dismantle the coalition if the government attacks our brothers in Gaza.”

Gneim concluded that the government is still being checked by the Arab party: “We’ll wait to verify the nature of the new government,” he said.


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