Israel: Head of Joint List resigns over members’ secret talks with coalition

Palestinian MK Sami Abu Shehadeh (Ahmad Gharabli - AFP)

Middle East Monitor  /  May 12, 2022

Head of the Joint List bloc, which includes six Israeli Palestinian MKs, Sami Abu Shehadeh, has resigned over members’ secret talks with the Israeli coalition government, Arab48 reported yesterday.

Abu Shehadeh, who is the head of the Balad Party, said that he would discuss his party’s partnership with the Joint List in a meeting with party members.

He said that he resigned after the secret talks held without his knowledge between MK Ahmed Tibi, head of Ta’al Party, and MK Ayman Odeh, head of the Joint List, with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid.

The meetings, Arab48 reported, happened prior to the no-confidence vote that took place on Monday.

Odeh has said he would not commit to joining a no-confidence vote as it would assist former PM Benjamin Netanyahu in his goal of returning to power as prime minister.

Abu Shehadeh said he made the decision after discussing it with his party, adding that there are differences related to the role of the Joint List and the methods it should adopt during its work in the Knesset.

“For us, the Joint List represents a united national minority with a clear political program and clear national principles, not only a group of parties that came together to be able to cross the electoral threshold,” he said.

The Joint List is a bloc of mainly Israeli Palestinian parties in the Israeli government.