Arab-Israeli Lawmaker Vows to Continue Fighting the ‘Muezzin Bill’

Ahmed Tibi and Ze'ev Elkin

Arab-Israeli parliamentarian Ahmed Tibi, a champion of the Palestinian cause known to fan the flames of anti-Israel incitement, threatened to fight a bill limiting the noise of the Muslim call to prayer during the wee hours of the morning.

Joint List Member of Knesset (Israeli Parliament) Ahmed Tibi of the Joint List – a political alliance of four Arab parties – stated on Monday that he would continue to fight the “Muezzin Bill,” intended to ban loudspeakers for early-morning Muezzin calls to prayer, even if the measure is approved in first reading at Wednesday’s Knesset Plenum.

Tibi, a champion of the Palestinian cause known to fan the flames of anti-Israel incitement, said that if the bill passes its first reading, he and his Joint List colleagues will continue to fight it on the parliamentary, political, legal and national arenas.

Speaking to the Fatah conference in Ramallah, Tibi added that while Israeli Arabs are part of the Palestinian people, their situation is different because they are citizens of the State of Israel and, he claimed, struggle for peace and equality.

The bill, tabled by Jewish Home MK Moti Yogev as a noise-prevention regulation during sleeping hours, was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation last Monday, but has been consequently met with severe criticism from Arab lawmakers, Palestinians, and human rights organizations that claim the bill constitutes racial persecution that would breed hatred and incitement against the Arab public.

Earlier this month, Tibi called on the “Palestinian” community in Israel to fight the law and those behind it with “grassroots” activities.

Tibi: ‘There Must Be Insubordination and Rebellion’

“I say and repeat that there must be insubordination and rebellion against this law. No one must obey it. I call on all my people to refuse this bill until it gets to the third reading in the Knesset and is approved.”

Tibi also compared the early-morning Muslim calls to prayer to the sirens in Jewish neighborhoods on Friday afternoon announcing the arrival of the Sabbath, claiming that should the law pass, he would try and fight those as well.

The significant difference, however, is that the Muslim call to prayer is done on a loudspeaker at 4 a.m., when most people are asleep.

Yisrael Beiteinu party chairman MK Robert Ilatov placed the blame for the “arson terror” on Tibi’s shoulders, saying it was a direct consequence of Tibi’s calls to rebel against the Israeli establishment. Ilatov also called n Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit on Monday to open a criminal investigation against the Joint List MK.

A spokesman for Tibi said he would be unavailable to answer questions about the statements, potential alternatives to the “Muezzin Bill” or what solutions he might have to offer to Arab supporters of the proposal.

By: Ilana Messika/TPS

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Source: United with Israel