- Title: 'They're all right-wing': Palestinians shrug off Israeli elections
- Date: 22nd March 2021
- Summary: RAMALLAH, WEST BANK (MARCH 21, 2021) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE IS THE STREETS OF RAMALLAH (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) 52 YEAR OLD RAMALLAH RESIDENT, ABDULRAHMAN DAOUD, SAYING: "Unfortunately, as Palestinian people, we will not count on the Israeli elections, since it revolves in a vicious circle, and for the past 30 years, there has not been any tangible progress on the ground." JERICHO, WEST BANK (MARCH 22, 2021) (REUTERS) ROUNDABOUT IN JERICHO WITH A SCULPTURE IN THE MIDDLE OF IT READING 'JERICHO' MAN IN FRONT OF VEGETABLE SHOP MAN CALLING FOR VEGETABLE SALES (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) 31 YEAR OLD, JERICHO RESIDENT, NIDAL BALU, SAYING: "I think that the Israeli elections that are supposed to happen tomorrow, will be similar to the Knesset elections previously carried out, and the government's stance and the stance of the political parties, have been and will always be the same stance, there is a zionist Israeli policy that exists within the Israeli occupying entity, and whichever the party that will be elected for the Knesset, will perform within the same policy and have the same behaviour." SCULPTURE ON ROUNDABOUT READING 'JERICHO, CITY OF THE MOON' (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) 58 YEAR OLD, JERICHO RESIDENT, IBRAHIM ISHTAYAT SAYING: "During two years, they had four elections, for Knesset members, but as Palestinians, do we benefit from the Israeli elections? I have the answer for you, no, there is no benefit, because it is the same system that has been there for 20 years, with Netanyahu in the lead, and we will not reach any result with the Israelis." RAMALLAH, WEST BANK (MARCH 21, 2021) (REUTERS) GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE PALESTINIANS NATIONAL INITIATIVE, MUSTAFA BARGHOUTHI IN HIS OFFICE CLOSE-UP ON MUSTAFA BARGHOUTHI'S FACE (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) GENERAL SECRETARY OF THE PALESTINIAN NATIONAL INITIATIVE, MUSTAFA BARGHOUTHI SAYING: "We do not expect anything good from these elections, because it is apparent that the competition is between the right wing, and the extreme right wing, they are all in from the right wing, and all the parties, even those opposing Netanyahu reject the creation of an independent palestinian nation, reject that the palestinians have jerusalem as their capital, and most of the Zionist parties, if not all of them, reject the idea of a solution that will create peace in the region." SENIOR MEMBER OF THE PALESTINIAN LIBERATION ORGANIZATION (PLO), BASSAM AL-SALHI, IN HIS OFFICE AL-SALHI GOING THROUGH PAPERS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SENIOR MEMBER OF THE PALESTINIAN LIBERATION ORGANIZATION (PLO) BASSAM AL-SALHI, SAYING: "Not creating a government in Israel or maintaining this government, or the creation of a government that is more right wing, as it is apparent, all those options will negatively effect the Palestinian situation. Unless there is an active international intervention to stop the Israeli measures, we will see that those measures will increase, and unfortunately the normalization's with Arab countries, and there will be efforts to liquidate the Palestinian cause, and here, there will be no difference between the Biden administration or that of Trump." EXTERIOR OF THE PLO BUILDING IN RAMALLAH
- Embargoed: 5th April 2021 13:09
- Keywords: Elections Jericho Palestinians Prime minister Ramallah Shtayyeh reactions
- Location: JERICHO AND RAMALLAH, WEST BANK
- City: JERICHO AND RAMALLAH, WEST BANK
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Middle East
- Reuters ID: LVA003E560HTZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: With Israel gearing up for a fourth election in two years, Palestinians in the occupied West Bank shrugged off the vote on Monday (March 22) and predicted it would produce yet another right-wing government.
Israelis head to the polls on Tuesday in what has largely been seen as a referendum on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's right-wing coalition, in power for over a decade.
Palestinians criticise Netanyahu for expanding Israeli settlements in West Bank territory they seek for a future state.
"Do we benefit from the Israeli elections? I have an answer for you. No," said Ibrahim Ishtayat, a resident of Jericho in the West Bank's Jordan Valley.
"It is the same system that has been there for (years), with Netanyahu in the lead."
Israeli opinion polls ahead of the March 22 vote show Netanyahu's Likud party one seat short of a majority in Israel's 120-member parliament. He faces challenges from the centre and from his right.
While the fate of the 5.2 million Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza featured prominently in previous Israeli election campaigns, this time around they rarely came up.
During a meeting of the cabinet of the Palestinian Authority, which has limited self-rule in the West Bank, President Mohammad Shtayyeh said the Palestinians "regard the election as an internal (Israeli) affair".
But he accused Israeli political parties of "competing over more land (and) more settlements ... their election campaigns were at the expense of our land and our people."
Campaign posters appealing to the roughly 440,000 Israeli settlers in the West Bank are plastered along the territory's major traffic arteries, some of them near entrances to major Palestinian towns like Hebron and Nablus.
"We do not expect anything good from these elections ... (it's) a competition between the right-wing and the extreme right-wing, they're all right-wing," said Palestinian lawmaker Mustafa Barghouti, alluding to Israeli politicians who have staged a right-wing challenge to Netanyahu.
Israel captured the West Bank in the 1967 Middle East war. It defends its settlements in the territory, citing security needs as well as biblical and historical connections to the land.
(Production: Adel abu Nemeh, Ismael Khader, Mustafa abu Ganeyeh, Rami Ayyub, Nuha Sharaf)
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