MEE: Jordan seeks to sway Palestinian voters to block Netanyahu return

[18-08-2022 04:50 PM]

Ammon News - The Jordanian government is hoping to lobby Palestinian citizens of Israel to vote in the upcoming general elections in a bid to keep Benjamin Netanyahu from returning to power, MEE reported.

Amman wants to reach out to Raed Salah, a prominent Palestinian religious and political figure, through intermediaries from the branch of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, a source from the group told London-based online news outlet Middle East Eye.

"Jordanian authorities have informed members of the Muslim Brotherhood movement using unofficial channels of their desire to engage with the head of the northern chapter of the Islamic Movement in occupied Palestine, Raed Salah," the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, as reported by MEE.

Salah was the leader of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel until it was banned there in 2015 and is an influential figure among Palestinians, especially citizens of Israel.

Salah has publicly cited concern about normalising Israel through the vote and argued that Palestinian participation in the Israeli parliament, or Knesset, has not brought about any meaningful benefit for the Palestinian cause.

The source said it is therefore "impossible" for the Islamic Movement to take part in this year's vote despite Jordanian attempts to open a channel of dialogue.

The media office of Salah confirmed his unwillingness to take part in such campaigns and denied reports of any contact between him and Jordanian officials.

"There is no truth to the media reports that talk about communication between Jordan and Sheikh Raed Salah. Our position is clear in support of the boycott of the Israeli Knesset elections," Salah's office told MEE.

Salah has been previously turned away from entering Jordan. He is currently banned by Israel from leaving the country.

MEE contacted the government's official spokesperson, Faisal al-Shboul, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.

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