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Photo: Gil Yohanan
Barakeh. 'Courage'
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Tibi. 'There should be more like him'
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: Dudi Vaaknin
Pines. Resigned
Photo: Dudi Vaaknin
MK Tibi: There is a righteous man in gov't
Arab MKs rush to praise move taken by Minister Ophir Pines-Paz, who resigned from government following Lieberman's inclusion. MK Zahalka: World should punish Israeli government for Lieberman's inclusion like it punished Austrian government for Haider's inclusion
Knesset Member Ahmad Tibi (United Arab List-Ta'al) said Monday evening following Minister Ophir Pines-Paz's resignation from the government that "there is a righteous man in the government."

 

Pines-Paz announces his resignation after the Labor Party's Central Committee voted in favor of the party sating in the government despite the inclusion of the Avigdor Lieberman's party Israel Our Home.

 

Tibi said that "Ophir Pines' courage and public integrity must be appreciated. There should be more like him, although there are not many among the public."

 

Hadash Chairman, Knesset Member Mohammad Barakeh, also welcomed the move, noting Pines Paz's "integrity and courage."

 

Barakeh added: I hope this is the start of forming a real opposition. We must beware of the cynicism of the Labor Party, which will aspire to appoint an Arab minister in the expanded Lieberman government."

 

Earlier, members of the Higher Arab Monitoring Committee, including Knesset members and heads of Arab councils, demonstrated opposite the Knesset in Jerusalem against Lieberman's inclusion in the government. The demonstration is part of a series of protest activities.

 

Dozens of activists from the different parties took part in the demonstration, in which they carried signs reading, 'No to fascism,' and chanted slogans against Lieberman's inclusion into the government.

 

'Contempt and disgust'

MK Jamal Zahalka (National Democratic Assembly) said during the demonstration, "Lieberman's inclusion testifies to complete chaos and a message of disrespect to the Arab citizens and their rights."

 

"The world must punish the Israeli government for Lieberman's inclusion like he punished the Austrian government for Jorg Haider's inclusion."

 

Earlier, the United Arab List-Ta'al held a special discussion on the issue, and decided that "this inclusion stains the Olmert government with a mark of Cain of racism and fascism, provides legitimacy to racism and serves as another nail in the Israeli democracy's coffin."

 

MK Talab El-Sana stressed that the inclusion of Lieberman "means a divorce certificate to any chance of peace in the area and to coexistence and civil equality."

 

Faction officials said that "any attempt to authorize this shame by establishing a committee for Arab affairs or by appointing an Arab minister instead of Ophir Pines triggers contempt and disgust."

 

Roee Nahmias contributed to the report

 

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