2016-08-03 / Mideast

Netanyahu calls on Arab citizens to be more involved

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a video message called on Arab citizens of Israel to become more involved in Israeli society.

The message was released in Hebrew and English with subtitles in Arabic.

“Before my election, I said Arab voters were going to the polls in droves,” Netanyahu said, referring to the March 2015 national election. “I was referring to a specific political party, but many people were understandably offended. I apologized for how my comment was misunderstood.

“But today I want to go further. Today I am asking Arab citizens in Israel to take part in our society—in droves. Work in droves, study in droves, thrive in droves.”

Over 20 percent of Israel’s citizens are Arab.

“I am proud of the role Arabs play in Israel’s success,” Netanyahu said, noting that there are Arab Supreme Court justices, members of Knesset, entrepreneurs and doctors. “I want you to play an even greater role in” that success.

Netanyahu noted that the government recently passed a resolution to invest “massive resources” in Arab communities for areas such as public infrastructure, transportation, employment, education, housing and welfare. (JTA)

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