I'm repeating Rezeq Faraj's email about the petition re Azmi Bishara in case
you missed it.
In the coming days, a petition will be published in one of the major
newspapers in Europe. It will be in regards to the Israeli Attorney General's
attempt to disqualify the NDA and MK Azmi Bishara. (If you haven't received
any updates on the issue or would like more information, please visit
www.azmibishara.info - text below) If you would like to have your name added
to the petition, email <A HREF="mailto:petition@...">petition@...</A> and cc <A HREF="mailto:einas_haj@...">einas_haj@...</A>
stating your full name, occupation /position /office, and your country.
Please respond fast. A final decision on the issue is expected soon.
P.S. Send your details to me even if you have already signed the petition on
the website. Just to make sure.
Thanks for your time and concern
(via Rezeq Faraj on JustPeaceUK's e-group http://rezeq.com)
CEC Disqualifies Balad and MK Azmi Bishara
On December 31, 2002 the Central Elections Committee (CEC) voted to
disqualify the National Democratic Assembly (Balad) and its candidate, MK
Azmi Bishara, from participating in Israel's general elections scheduled for
January 28, 2003.
In an unprecedented move, motivated by political rather than legal
considerations, Israel's Attorney General (AG), Elyakim Rubinstein,
recommended that the CEC disqualify both Balad and MK Bishara, based on the
amended version of Basic Law: The Knesset which states that "any list of
candidates... or any single candidate... will not participate in the election
if in the goals, or in the actions of the list or of the person, directly or
indirectly, is one of the following: denial of the existence of the State of
Israel as a Jewish and democratic State; incitement to racism; support of
armed struggle against The State of Israel."
In other words, the CEC has disqualified Balad for calling to democratize the
State of Israel into a state for all of its citizens and disqualified MK Azmi
Bishara for reaffirming the internationally recognized right of occupied
people to resist foreign occupation.
CEC Chairman, Justice Mishal Heshin, voted against the disqualification of
both Balad and MK Bishara on the grounds that there was "no evidence" to
substantiate the AG's recommendation. The CEC's decision to disqualify Balad
is binding, and the party will appeal to the High Court of Justice. The CEC's
decision to disqualify MK Azmi Bishara, however, must be met with the High
The systematic attempt to delegitimize the legitimate political platform and
chosen leadership of the Arab minority in Israel through "legal" means must
be stopped! It is not to late: the Israeli high Court of Justice must make
its final decisions by January 6, 2003.
PLEASE SIGN THE APPEAL BELOW URGING THE ISRAELI HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE NOT TO
SANCTION TO CEC'S RACIST DISQUALIFICATION OF ARAB PARTIES AND CANDIDATES
We, the undersigned, are gravely concerned by the threat to ban Arab
political figures, foremost among them MK Azmi Bishara, and his party, the
National Democratic Assembly, from participating in the upcoming Israeli
elections. We call upon the Israeli High Court of Justice not to sanction
such a scandalous decision.
MK Azmi Bishara's political program, which calls to democratize the State of
Israel into a state for all its citizens-Arabs and Jews alike-is not a threat
to democracy. It is legitimate not to agree with it, but it is not legitimate
to forbid him from proposing it to the Israeli electorate within a democratic
The Arab citizens of Israel, who comprise 20% of the population, have the
right to a democratically elected leadership that will represent them, their
needs, and their hopes. Banning one of their most outspoken
leaders-re-elected consistently since 1996 and expected to garner more votes
than ever in the upcoming elections-means depriving them of their basic civil
We call upon all democrats, in Israel and around the world, to mobilize
against this threat. We implore the Israeli High Court of Justice to rule in
favor of democracy and against discrimination and censorship.
We ask that the right of the National Democratic Assembly and its candidate,
MK Azmi Bishara, to participate in free and fair elections be upheld, and, by
extension, the rights of their voters-Jewish and Arab citizens of the State
of Israel-to be represented in the Knesset.
First Name, Last Name, Profession/Position/Institution, Country
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]