Israeli Member of Knesset (MK) David Rotem, member of the fundamentalist Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) party, headed by Israeli Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, intends to file an appeal to the Central Elections Committee demanding it to prevent the National Democratic Assembly (Balad) Arab party from participating in the upcoming Israeli elections.Rotem stated that the Yisrael Beiteinu party considers the Balad party to be a â€śsupporter of terrorismâ€ť, and that the party â€śis hostile towards the existence of Israel as a Jewish democratic stateâ€ť.
Two days ago, the Knesset decided to hold parliamentary election on January 22, 2013. The decision was made after 100 Members of Knesset (MK), out of 120, voted for early elections, and set January of 2013 as the official date for the new elections.
The National Democratic Assembly (NDA) stated that as â€śIsrael prepares for elections, racist voices are starting to call for preventing its list from participating, while other fundamentalist MKâ€™s are calling for preventing MK Hanin Zoabi from participating in the elections because she was part of the Freedom Flotilla that was sailing to Gaza and was attacked by Israel on May 31, 2010, when the army killed 9 Turkish solidarity activistsâ€ť.
The NDA said that it will not bow down to pressure from fundamentalist extremist parties, adding that it rejects the request that was filed by MK Rotem, and also rejects that demand the was set forth by Likud MK, Ofir Akunis, who called for banning Zoabi from participating in the elections.
Akunis is the deputy head of the Central Elections Committee of the Knesset; he filed an appeal to the Committeeâ€™s head, Elyakim Rubinstein, demanding him to bar Zoabi (Balad) from running in the upcoming Israeli Knesset elections.
Akunis claimed that his demand is based on Section 7A of the Knesset Basic Law that forbids persons who â€śsupport terrorist organizations, or the agendas of enemy states, from participating in the electionsâ€ť.
He alleged that by participating in the Freedom Flotilla to break the Israeli siege on Gaza, â€śZoabi manifested her support for terrorismâ€ť.
Earlier this month, Likud Mk, Danny Danon, demanded the Central Elections Committee to prevent Zoabi from participating in the elections, and said that â€śZoabi belongs in jailâ€ť.
Danon claimed that â€śZoabi used his parliamentary immunity to support terrorism, and terrorists who tried to kill Israeli soldiersâ€ť.
He said that Zoabi â€ścontinues the path of former MK Azmi Bishara who, according to Dannon, â€śfled the country after he was convicted of aiding Hezbollah party during the second Lebanon Warâ€ť.
He further stated that â€śthe difference between Zoabi and Bishara is that Bishara verbally attacked Israel, while Zoabi participated in a violent and a terrorist flotilla that harmed Israeli soldiersâ€ť.
Responding to the statements of Dannon and Rotem, the National Democratic Assembly issued a statement saying that â€śthe NDA will counter this vicious and racist campaign that targets democracyâ€ť.
The NDA added that those calls to prevent it from running in the elections â€śonly convict the Israeli political system, and prove its racist nature as a system the allows fascism to overrule democracyâ€ť.
The NDA also stated that its stances are clear and not hidden under vague agendas;
â€śWe are against a Jewish State; our political program is based on a democratic state that represents all of its citizens, as for the claim that the Assembly supports terrorism, we are struggling against terrorism, the real terrorism practiced by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinian people who are struggling for freedom and independence, we do not only support this struggle, we believe our struggle is an essential part of itâ€ť.