A dramatic political development occurred last week when the United Arab List, the political wing of the Southern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel, signed a coalition agreement that paved the way to replacing longtime prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu.
This has led media outlets to connect the two movements in articles that do little to shine a favorable light on the Brotherhood. An article on the Arab News website, for example, said that “analysts see the development as yet another example of a Muslim
In response to these developments, the Muslim Brotherhood declared in a statement that: “The Brotherhood stresses that there is no connection – ideological or organizational – between it and this movement,” referring to the Islamic Movement in Israel.
Shabiy points to the Islamic Movement in Israel as an example. Formed in 1971, the movement split into the Northern and Southern branches after a disagreement over whether to participate in Israel’s national elections. Neither sees Israel as a legitimate
The Northern Branch, on the other hand, refused to participate. It was ultimately outlawed in 2015, and its leader, former Umm al-Fahm Mayor Sheikh Raed Salah, is currently in prison in Israel on charges of incitement to terror. His deputy, Kamal Khatib,
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Shabiy believes the Muslim Brotherhood’s statement of disavowal likely will have no impact on Ra’am and its policies. The move received the approval of the Islamic Movement’s religious leaders, he says, “and at the end of the day, what he [Ra’am
chairman Mansour Abbas] is trying to do now is to further the interests of the Israeli
“We may see [Arab parties] Hadash and Balad using this statement as part of their campaign,” he told The Media Line. The parties may use the statement to drive away possible Ra’am voters who have supported the party because of its connection with the
“How will the Muslim Brotherhood explain to people in Egypt, for example, or Jordan, their supporters, that this man [Abbas], the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Israel, sits at the same table with Bennett and Liberman?” he said. Yisrael Beitenu party
Notably, this includes budgetary commitments and a promise to give the issue of crime and violence ailing the sector its due attention. The move, however, is controversial within the Arab population in Israel.
Awad, for example, is highly critical of the agreement behind Ra’am’s support for the
Abbas stressed throughout the election campaign and afterward that he would seek to form an alliance with whomever promises to advance the civic interests of the Arab community in Israel the most, including the right. Abbas may have outspokenly put aside national Palestinian matters for the sake of civic interests, but this remains a key point of contention between him and his critics.
not with empty slogans. Mansour Abbas has proven to everyone that he is a leader and not a ‘traditional’ Knesset member.”