Hundreds of Palestinians, including members of a coalition of Arab parties known as the Joint List, held protests in northern Nazareth province as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited a vaccination center, Anadolu reports.
Several demonstrators, including lawmakers, were slightly injured as clashes erupted between Israeli security forces and Palestinian protesters.
#Photo of a Palestinian woman raising her shoe in the face of the Israeli police during a demonstration against the visit of the Israeli PM, #Netanyahu to the city of Nazareth today. The peaceful demonstration was violently dispersed by the police. @middneews pic.twitter.com/pBnHKJhJZA
— Middle East News (@middneews) January 14, 2021
Police detained nine protesters, according to the state-owned KAN channel.
Critics say that Netanyahu’s visit, his third to an Arab city in two weeks, can be evaluated as part of the Likud party’s efforts to court Arab voters.
Aiming to increase votes before the March 23 national elections, Netanyahu said in Nazareth that a “new era” has begun between Arab citizens and Jews for well-being, integration and security.
Netanyahu faces protests in Nazareth, the largest Arab city in Israel, as he continues effort to court Arab voters https://t.co/zJDHgsMw52
— Shibley Telhami (@ShibleyTelhami) January 13, 2021
“Arab citizens should fully be a part of Israeli society,” Israeli daily Haaretz quoted Netanyahu.
Israel will hold snap elections after parliament failed December 22 to meet a deadline to pass a budget.
The ruling Likud party headed by Netanyahu and its coalition partner, the Blue and White party, led by Defense Minister Benny Gantz, could not agree on a budget.
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)