The head of the Knesset Guard, Yuval Chen, ordered that Ra’am (United Arab List) head Mansour Abbas be given a bodyguard, following violent threats made against him during right-wing protests.
“It is a bad feeling to be threatened and to have to be protected,” Abbas said following the decision. “I accepted the request to have a bodyguard from the Knesset Guard just like all other requests from Knesset officials.”
Abbas told confidants earlier this week that he feared for his life from right-wingers who accuse him of supporting terrorism.
"We need to consider the past - that a prime minister was murdered," he told Channel 13 in an interview on Wednesday night.
“The thousands calling me a terrorist were encouraging harm to me,” he said. “What bothers me most is that their leaders know who I am and what I represent, and yet they have no problem with me losing my life, as long as they achieve their political goals.”
Ra’am officials complained that the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) was not doing enough to protect their leader.
“I guess they don’t care that there could be another political assassination in Israel, because he is Arab,” a Ra’am official said.
The Shin Bet responded: “All threats to MKs are dealt with immediately without regard to their sector.”
Abbas told Nas Radio that he was not only afraid of the Right. He said Israeli-Arabs were conspiring with Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank in messages inciting against him and his party.