(September 5, 2018 / JNS) A delegation of Arab Israeli lawmakers from the Joint Arab List party met on Tuesday with senior European Union officials in Brussels in a bid to drum up support for a European Union condemnation of Israel over the controversial nation-state law.
The law, which defines Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people, has been sharply criticized by the country’s Arab minority, with Arab lawmakers calling it “racist” and “verging on apartheid.”
Last week, it was reported that Arab Knesset members had teamed up with Palestinian officials at the United Nations in a bid to promote a U.N. General Assembly resolution condemning Israel over the legislation.
Joint Arab List Chairman Ayman Odeh met Tuesday with E.U. foreign-policy chief Federica Mogherini, while five other Israeli Arab MKs met with other top officials, including Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn.
In a statement released after his meeting with Mogherini, Odeh said that he “appreciates the fact that the E.U.’s foreign-policy chief has agreed to take this meeting despite the enormous pressure to cancel it.
“This was an important meeting that focused mainly on the nation-state law, and we agreed to closely monitor the developments,” he said. “Our struggle against this law must be fought first and foremost in Israel but our international partners have a significant contribution to the fight against the nation-state law, enacted by a radical and racist right-wing government.”