Knesset: Arab parties reunite for upcoming elections
Israel’s Arab parties have pledged to contest upcoming elections to the 120-member Knesset (parliament) unitedly, to increase their representation.
ARAB PARTIES TO CONTEST SEPTEMBER POLLS UNITEDLY
After hectic negotiations, the heads of four Arab parties decided to prepare a joint list of candidates for the September elections. The parties, who contested last April polls in two blocks, performed badly. Now they have decided to prepare a joint list, instead of two separate lists, to enable Arab voters to unite behind them.
In a joint statement issued on Thursday, four Arab parties the Arab Movement for Change, the Democratic Front for Peace and Equality, the Southern Branch of the Islamic Movement and the National Democratic Assembly said fighting elections unitedly was the only choice for them.
Elections in Israel are based on nationwide proportional representation. According to the procedure, which is much different from the British Westminster system, the number of seats accorded to the political parties depends on the number of popular votes it receives. The electoral threshold is currently set at 3.25 percent. The citizens, therefore, vote for their preferred party and not for any individual candidates.
The four parties stressed the need to expedite the completion of the joint list to enable them to launch a strong electoral campaign in order to increase political representation of the Arabs in the Knesset.