Hadash-Ta’al chairman Ayman Odeh announced his retirement from Knesset before next election in a video message released on his social media on Tuesday night. On Twitter, Odeh said “Part of being a public servant is knowing when to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. That’s why today I made one of the hardest decisions of my life: At the end of this term, I will not run in the next Knesset elections.”
Ayman Odeh voting in 2015 elections (Photo: Wikimedia)
“Thank you all from the bottom of my heart,” he wrote on Facebook. “I have decided not to run for the next term of the Knesset. I will seek with you to build the largest unit based on the political program that brought us to 15 seats [in 2020], to our collective and true sense of power. Thank you thank you all for every moment of the last 8 years.”
Odeh clarified in the video that he will continue public work for his community and will remain active in fighting to end Israel’s occupation of Palestinians, because “without peace, security, equality and democracy there will no normal relations between the Israeli and Palestinian peoples.” He said he would remain involved in: “Building unity in Arab society and with our Jewish partners, and peace between the two peoples.”
Odeh was first elected to the Knesset on March 31, 2015 and has served in it continuously since then. The Joint List which he headed at the time went on to win 13 seats in the elections and was the third-largest party in the Knesset. Odeh served as secretary general of Hadash from 2006 to 2015 and before that sat on the city council in his native Haifa. Actually, MK Odeh is the chair of the Science and Technology Committee of the Knesset.