Israeli Arab Parliament Members slam Finance Minister comments on ''demographic threat''
Israel's Finance Minister and former Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday told a conference on security issues that Israel does not face a "demographic threat" from the Palestinians who will be under Palestinian control and will enjoy "self determination" in the future, but rather faces a threat from the Israeli Arab population.
According to him, it is of the utmost importance "to maintain the Jewish majority in the country" and for this the economy must be improved to encourage more Jews to immigrate from the Diaspora. Netanyahu warned that should the Israeli Arab sector grow to 35-40 percent of the population, Israel will become a bi-national country.
Arab Member of Israeli Knesset (Parliament), Ahmed Tibi said in response to Netanyahu's comments that "the day is not far off when Netanyahu and his cohorts will put up roadblocks at the entrances to Arab villages to tie Arab women's tubes and spray us with spermicide."
Another Arab deputy, Mohammed Barakeh said in response that Netanyahu's comments are nothing more than "lowly, ugly racism." He called on the finance minister to end the incitement against the Arab population and to stop viewing its natural growth as a problem.
On his part, Member of Knesset, Jamal Zahalka, said in response that Netanyahu was stoking the demographic phobia and hostility towards the Israeli Arab sector. "He who speaks of the Arab citizens as a threat is legitimizing racism," he said. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)