Israeli Election Committee Asked to Ban Parties Running 'Racist’ Campaigns

Labor MK protest anti-Muslim messages by Likud party ahead of the municipal elections in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and elsewhere.

Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis
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Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis

The Central Election Committee has been asked to ban a number of parties running in the municipal elections in two weeks because they are running “racist” campaigns.

MK Omer Bar-Lev (Labor) has written to the chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Supreme Court Justice Salim Joubran, and Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar and asked to ban the slates in local elections. Bar-Lev asked to ban parties running in Jerusalem, Carmiel, Tel Aviv and Nazareth Ilit.

For example, signs for the Likud slate in Tel Aviv–Jaffa were put up bearing the slogan “Silence the Muezzin.” In Carmiel the Likud put a clip on the Internet in which the local party members running for city council promised to prevent the construction of a mosque in the city. In Jerusalem, a party has called to “Judaize” the city.

“I would like to draw your attention to the matter and demand you use your authority to ban and take sanctions against the slates that are trying to take advantage of the local elections for campaigns that fan hatred and harm the fragile coexistence that exists in Israeli society,” wrote Bar-Lev. “In concrete terms, I am asking to examine banning the slates.” At the very least, Bar-Lev asked that the parties be forced to remove the various campaigns and have sanctions invoked against them.

“Israeli society is composed of a delicate fabric of balances between a Jewish majority and minorities whose rights are set in law and the [Israeli] Declaration of Independence. As a Member of Knesset and an Israeli-Zionist citizen, I am embarrassed by the slates which are trying to trample the rights of minorities and expect you to act forcefully against these unacceptable occurrences and uproot them,” wrote Bar-Lev.

Labor MK Omer Bar-Lev.Credit: Ronen Topelberg

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