Trump’s “Peace to Prosperity” plan proposes land swaps that could include both populated and unpopulated areas. It suggests that the so-called Triangle area in Israel, consisting of several Arab communities “which largely self-identify as Palestinian, become part of the State of Palestine.” The plan points out that the Arab communities “were originally designated to fall under Jordanian control during the negotiations of the Armistice Line of 1949, but ultimately were retained by Israel for military reasons that have since been mitigated.”
Why are the 250,000 Arab Israelis living in the Triangle area strongly opposed to the idea of becoming part of a Palestinian state?
The main reason Arabs in Israel are afraid of becoming Palestinian citizens is because they know that that that the Palestinian state will be anything but democratic. Many Arab citizens of Israel see how Palestinians living under the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank and Hamas in the Gaza Strip are subject to human rights violations on a daily basis.
In Israel, Arab citizens participate in the general elections and have their own representatives in the Knesset. In the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Palestinians have been deprived of free and fair elections since January 2006.
The continued power struggle between the PA and Hamas has denied Palestinians the right to vote for new members of their parliament, the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC). In addition, Palestinians have been denied the right to vote for a new president since January 2005, when Mahmoud Abbas was elected for a four-year term of office. Last month, Abbas entered the 16th year of the same term.
In light of the ongoing dispute between the PA and Hamas, the prospects of holding new presidential or parliamentary elections remain zero.
While Palestinians have not had a functioning parliament since 2007, when Hamas violently seized control of the Gaza Strip after overthrowing Abbas’s PA regime, Israel’s Arab citizens continue to run in elections for the Knesset. The current Knesset has 14 Arab parliamentarians. Continue Reading….