Palestinian-Israeli Knesset member appeals election ban

Al Jazeera reports: A Palestinian-Israeli politician is appealing a court ruling barring her from running in Israel’s general elections next month.

Last week, Knesset member Haneen Zoabi was disqualified for “undermining” Israel because she was on board the Mavi Marmara ship in May 2010 as part of an international flotilla challenging Israel’s blockade on the Gaza Strip.

The Turkish ship was boarded by Israeli special forces as it approached waters off Gaza. In the violence that followed, nine activists were shot dead by the commando’s.

Israel’s Supreme Court now has four days to decide whether to revoke Zoabi’s election ban.

Speaking to Al Jazeera on Thursday, Zoabi said the ban was the culmination of a long process of persecution.

“Threats, I would say [I received] hundreds of threats, by letters, by email, by phonecall … They have disqualified me, stripped me from some Parliamentarian rights, such as my diplomatic passport,” Zoabi said.

“The Israeli Knesset is trying not just to disqualify me, but also to disqualify the Arab citizens in Israel. Because I represent those who vote for me, and the right wing in the Knesset – which is the majority within the Knesset – is trying to delegitimise the Arab voice within the Knesset,” she said.

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