Arab party to stay in Israeli ruling coalition, ending political crisis

by IANS |

Jerusalem, May 12 (IANS) The Arab party in Israel's governing coalition has said that it would stay in the coalition, preventing another crisis for the embattled government.

Mansour Abbas, leader of Israel's Arab political party Ra'am, said his party would stop asking to "freeze" its membership in the coalition led by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, a demand he previously made in protest against the police actions at Al-Aqsa Mosque in recent weeks, Xinhua news agency reported.

"We decided to give an additional opportunity to the coalition and the government," Abbas told reporters in the parliament.

"We reached understandings for the betterment of Arab society and Israelis in general," he said.

Ra'am is one of the eight parties that compose the cross-partisan coalition which also includes pro-settler and liberal parties. The parties have little in common but were united to oust former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is facing a criminal trial over corruption charges.

With the formation of the current coalition in June 2021, Ra'am became the first Arab political party to be included in a ruling coalition in Israel.

If Ra'am, with four seats in the 120-member parliament, pulls out of Bennett's coalition which has only 60 seats now, the coalition will be in the minority and in dange of dissolution as it may struggle to fend off no-confidence votes.

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