MK Tibi at the UN with Abbas, drawing rightist ire
Ben-Ari calls for Tibi to be banned from running for next Knesset, saying he's member of the PLO, "a terrorist organization."
By ILENE PRUSHER, LAHAV HARKOV
MK Ahmed Tibi carved out his political name as a rare Israeli-Arab advising PLO chairman Yasser Arafat, representing the Palestinian negotiating team at the Wye River talks – then resigned in 1999 to run for the Knesset.Given that history, it should come as no surprise that Tibi decided to go to New York this week along with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. But parliamentarians on the right are outraged that Tibi, who has now been an MK for 13 years, would go to the United Nations for the critical vote on Palestinian statehood – as a representative of the Palestinians.MK Alex Miller (Yisrael Beytenu) slammed Tibi’s participation in the Palestinian mission to the UN, saying he is an accomplice in Abbas’s “diplomatic terror” against Israel.“Tibi is undermining the state in every way possible and represents only the Palestinians and not the citizens of Israel,” Miller said, calling to remove the “fifth column” from the Knesset and send Tibi to the Palestinian parliament.MK Michael Ben-Ari – who left National Union to form the Strong Israel party ahead of the election – called for Tibi to be banned from running for the next Knesset, saying he is a member of the PLO, a terrorist organization.Ben-Ari says he will bring a file filled with proof that Tibi is a “double agent in the Knesset” to the Central Election Committee.Tibi says he sees no reason to choose between his Israeli and Palestinian identities – and that he supports a two-state solution like most Israeli citizens.Advertisement“We’re talking about a Palestinian state alongside Israel, not instead of it,” he told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday.“All my life I worked for the freedom of the Palestinian people and against the occupation – and in favor of two states. This is a historic moment and I’m proud to be part of it.”He said the attacks on him were an act of “political terror.”“My presence [in New York] is a natural continuation of my positions which I represent in the Knesset in Israel,” he added.
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