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Palestinians praised for wildfire help

Palestinian member of the Israeli Knesset said the help sends a strong nationalist and political message to Israel

Gulf News

Ramallah: Ayman Odeh, a Palestinian member of the Israeli Knesset thanked the Palestinian Civil Defense for helping put out wildfires that spread across 1948 areas this week.

“I, on behalf of the Joint Arab List, extend my gratitude to every hand that participated in getting the fires under control,” he told the Fatah Congress in Ramallah on Tuesday night, who rose to their feet and started cheering: “To Jerusalem we are marching, providing martyrs in millions.”

“Who is the genuine owner of Al Karmel?” asked Odeh, quoting verses of the renowned late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, clearly stating that historic Palestine is purely Palestinian.

“Taking part in fighting the wildfires in historic Palestine does not only send a nationalist message, but also sends a political message with a deep meaning,” Odeh said.

“The Joint Arab List was originally established to give our Palestinian nation the necessary tools to confront the Israeli occupation,” he continued.

“We did not want this key political block to remain solid and deaf—we wanted to establish bridges of cooperation with Jewish democratic forces which advocate peace and an end to the Israeli occupation.

Odeh rejected the Palestinian hardline narrative which criticised Palestinian help in fighting the wildfires which spread across 1948 areas.

“They do not want him and his committee to enter the 1948 areas, address the Jews and influence them,” he said.

Palestinian members of the Israeli Knesset, including Jamal Zahalka, Ahmad Al Tibi and others are attending the Fatah Congress.