MK Avigdor Lieberman, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said Tuesday that the Nakba Day events held by Israeli Arabs on Independence Day was "proof" that any future agreement with Palestinians must include that sector as well.
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“The hate parade of Israel-haters, the adherents and successors of the Mufti of Jerusalem, and who gathered today in Wadi Ara to mourn the establishment of the State of Israel, offers still more proof that any arrangement with the Palestinians must include Israeli Arabs as well," said Lieberman, Israel's former foreign minister.
"Any arrangement that doesn’t include them won’t be a permanent arrangement, but merely a cease-fire until the next round and the additional demands that will come from that direction," he added.
“It’s time for the Israeli government to adopt this approach and to say so outright,” Lieberman said. “The reality under which they enjoy and exploit Israeli democracy and its freedom of speech in order to mourn [the state’s] establishment, while at the same time remaining silent about the slaughter of Palestinians in Syria, proves their hypocrisy and true objectives. These people need to find their places as citizens of the Palestinian Authority, with which they identify and whose flag they fly, and get their National Insurance and unemployment payments from there.”
Nakba is the Arabic word for catastrophe, and for Israeli Arabs, Nakba Day marks the anniversary of the evens of 1948, rather than the day of Independence celebrated by Jews.
Throughout his tenure as foreign minister, Lieberman gained notoriety by advocating for the transfer of the Israeli Arab population to a Palestinian state, and has suggested that "disloyal" members of that sector – which comprises about one-fifth of the population - should take Palestinian citizenship.
He has also accused Arab leaders of being responsible for rising racism among Israeli Jews toward Israeli Arabs
Lieberman, whose ultra-nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party campaigned in the 2009 elections under the slogan "no loyalty, no citizenship", has made national allegiance a central component of his political agenda, demanding all Israelis, swear an oath of loyalty to the state.
Israeli Arab leaders have accused him of racism over his policies and remarks