“If Netanyahu wins again, then the deal is done. But even if the left-wing wins, it will just be a matter of time before the same deal is implemented,” a Palestinian said.
Around 2.5 million Palestinians cannot vote in the upcoming elections in Israel which would be a fierce contest between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the right-wing Likud party, against Benny Gantz, leader of the center-left Blue and White party.
Ilhan Omar, Bernie Sanders Slam Netanyahu’s Vow of Annexation
If Netanyahu is re-elected, he has vowed to annex all the illegal settlements as wel as the Jordan Valley region in occupied West Bank and Palestinians living there would have no say.
“I don’t care about the elections, nor the fact that I can’t vote,” Abdel-Fatah Abu Ahmad told Al-Jazeera. He lives in Area C which comprises 60 percent of the West Bank under Israeli security and civilian control.
“Whether it’s the right or the left that comes to power, we’re doomed anyway,” he said.
Essam Khatib, another Palestinian from the neighborhood of Hizma said, “We don’t have the right to vote in the Knesset because we are Palestinians. But it doesn’t matter anyway, because they are all the same.”
This is what Apartheid looks like �� https://t.co/VBXAEGYpth
— (((YousefMunayyer))) (@YousefMunayyer) September 14, 2019 Netanyahu promised to annex all illegal settlements in West Bank and to “apply Israeli sovereignty to the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea immediately.”
“We haven’t had such an opportunity since the Six-Day War and I doubt we will have another opportunity in the next 50 years,” said Netanyahu as he outlined his plan to extend the occupation and formally colonize huge areas of what remains of the Palestinian West Bank.
At the recent April elections, Netanyahu had already vowed to annex those areas where there are illegal settlements, but said that the ‘historic opportunity’ afforded to him by U.S. President Donald Trump’s ‘peace deal’ is a chance to also take the Jordan Valley, thereby reducing the West Bank to a small, encircled enclave.
His main contender Gantz called for peace with Palestinians but is supportive of Netanyahu’s tough policies towards Gaza.
“Both believe in expanding settlements, both support the denial of freedom of Palestinians and both brag about how much they have crushed Palestinians,” said Diana Buttu, an expert on Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Palestinians Slam Netanyahu for Pledging Settlement Annexation
“If Netanyahu wins again, then the deal is done. But even if the left-wing wins, it will just be a matter of time before the same deal is implemented,” Abu Ahmad said.
Palestinians living in Israel who make up 20 percent of the population, are eligible to vote but if their vote would have an effect only if they participate in big numbers. They have complained in the past of policies and rhetoric that aims to dissuade them from voting.
According to a poll by the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center, in partnership with the German foundation Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, 40 percent Palestinians believe that the elections will have a negative impact and 25 percent believe that there would be no impact.
“The general sense is that regardless of who is in power, much of the same will unfold on the ground here,” said Tareq Baconi, an analyst with the Crisis Group, an international think tank. “But certainly there is a belief that with (Netanyahu) the mask is off, and the international community cannot hide behind the fig leaf of a peace process anymore.”
LINK ORIGINAL: Telesurtvi