Speaking at a ceremony held in the Arab town of Kafr Kassem on Thursday, October 29, Joint List head MK Ayman Odeh (Hadash) lashed out at Israel’s policies which, he said, are a continuation of the state’s attempts to drive Arab citizens out of the country.
In his speech, made during the commemoration of the 59th anniversary of the Kafr Kassem massacre, MK Odeh said: “Having failed to physically expel us, Netanyahu’s statements and racist incitement against the Arab community are aimed at banishing us from the legal and political spheres. They want to evict us politically, but we going to remain here physically, as well as politically, in spite of them,” he said.
On October 29, 1956, on the eve of the Sinai war, Israeli Border Police shot to death 49 Arab-Palestinian Israeli citizens returning home from work during a curfew of which they were unaware, its having been imposed earlier in the day only after they had left their homes. Among those killed were six women and 23 children aged 8 to 17. In his speech, Odeh called the massacre the second worst tragedy, after the Nakba, to befall the Arab-Palestinian community in Israel.
A year ago, President Reuven Rivlin attended the commemoration and apologized, the first such acknowledgement of regret for the offense ever made by an Israeli leader.