Tradition of Not Voting Keeps Palestinians Politically Irrelevant in Yerushalayim

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palestinians-abbasThere are perhaps 160,000 Arab residents of Yerushalayim eligible to vote in today’s municipal elections, yet in the 2008 election, only 2,744 east Jerusalem Arabs voted.

As part of a broader “anti-normalization” campaign, the Palestinian leadership has for decades warned residents against casting ballots.

“The whole thing is not really rational,” said Sari Nusseibeh, president of Al Quds University. Nusseibeh once advocated Palestinian voting, backing an Arab newspaper publisher who ran for mayor in 1987 but withdrew after his cars were burned and his home vandalized.

{Matzav.com Israel News Bureau}

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