Four Israeli Arab parties reunite for upcoming elections
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Four Israeli Arab parties reunite for upcoming elections

Balad, Ra’am, Ta’al and Hadash to once again run on a joint slate in September, likely under MK Ayman Odeh

Israeli Arab politician Ayman Odeh (c) of the Hadash party flashes the victory gesture as he reacts at the party's headquarters in Nazareth in northern Israel on election tonight on April 9, 2019. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)
Israeli Arab politician Ayman Odeh (c) of the Hadash party flashes the victory gesture as he reacts at the party's headquarters in Nazareth in northern Israel on election tonight on April 9, 2019. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)

Four political parties representing Israel’s Arab minority have announced they will reunite for the upcoming Knesset elections.

After their disappointing showing in the April elections, when they won 10 seats between them, the move looks to boost turnout and improve Arab representation in Israel’s parliament.

The four parties, Balad, Ra’am, Ta’al and Hadash first united in 2015 to become the Joint List, earning 13 seats in the 120-member Knesset.

In April, the parties ran on two separate lists, Hadash-Ta’al and Ra’am-Balad, which cost them a combined three seats, and the latter faction barely crossed the electoral threshold.

Ayman Odeh, the group’s prospective leader, said Thursday it was a mistake to run separately and the group was now committed to “national unity.”

The Ynet news site reported that a joint forum would meet in the coming days to decide the make-up of the slate.

Israel is heading to its second election this year on September 17, after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to form a majority coalition government following the April vote.

Arabs make up about 20 percent of Israel’s 9 million citizens.

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