MK Ayman Odeh unanimously reelected to head Hadash party

MK Aida Touma-Suleiman places second on list, while Ofer Kassif, currently the faction’s only Jewish candidate for Knesset, comes in third

Joint (Arab) List  leader Ayman Odeh attends a Knesset session in Jerusalem, January 1, 2019. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Joint (Arab) List leader Ayman Odeh attends a Knesset session in Jerusalem, January 1, 2019. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Knesset Member Ayman Odeh, the chairman of the Hadash party, was unanimously reelected to head the Arab-Jewish faction during its assembly in Shfaram on Friday, ahead of the April elections.

Odeh’s bid to chair the party was approved after the two challenging candidates, Jafar Farah and Shukri Awadah, pulled out of the race, Haaretz reported.

“In the face of incitement, in the face of the Nation State Law, in the face of racism, in the face of despair, Hadash and the Joint (Arab) List will lead values of peace, equality, democracy and justice,” Odeh said following the vote.

“We will put all our strength to replace the right-wing government. We can not do this alone, but it is impossible (to do so) without us — a left without the Arab population is not left. Only a broad democratic camp is a real alternative to the fascist and extreme right-wing regime.”

Arab Joint List MK Aida Touma-Suleiman (Photo by Hadas Parush/Flash90)

MK Aida Touma-Suleiman was elected for the second slot on the Hadash party list, while Ofer Kassif placed third. Kassif is currently the only Jewish candidate on the mostly Arab party’s list, after Dov Khenin announced his resignation from politics last month.

Officials in Hadash and the other two Arab Israeli factions currently united under the banner of the Joint (Arab) List, Balad and Ra’am, are still deliberating whether to continue working together, after the Ta’al party, headed by MK Ahmad Tibi, announced it would be running separately in the elections.

The Joint List currently holds 13 of the 120 Knesset seats.

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