United Arab List

The United Arab List (Hebrew: הַרְשִׁימָה הַעֲרָבִית הַמְאוּחֶדֶת, HaReshima HaAravit HaMe'uhedet; Arabic: القائمة العربية الموحدة‎, al-Qā'ima al-'Arabiyya al-Muwaḥḥada), commonly known in Israel by its Hebrew acronym Ra'am (Hebrew: רע"מ, lit. Thunder), is an Arab political party in Israel, and the political wing of the Southern Branch of the Islamic movement.[4]

United Arab List

הרשימה הערבית המאוחדת
القائمة العربية الموحدة
LeaderMansour Abbas
ChairmanMansour Abbas
Founded1996 (1996)
IdeologyIsraeli Arab interests
Two-state solution
Social conservatism
Political positionBig tent
National affiliationJoint List
Seats in Knesset
4 / 120
Most MKs5 (1999)
Election symbol
ع م


United Arab List election ballot, 2013

The party was established prior to the 1996 elections, unrelated to the original United Arab List that existed in the late 1970s and early 1980s. It was joined in an electoral alliance by the Arab Democratic Party (which held two seats in the outgoing parliament) and the southern faction of the Islamic Movement. The party initially went under the title of Mada-Ra'am, Mada being the acronym and common name for the Arab Democratic Party. In the elections, the party won four seats. During the Knesset term, the Arab Democratic Party became a faction within the United Arab List, and its name was dropped from the party title.

The next elections saw the party increase its share of the vote and pick up five seats. However, internal disagreements saw three MKs leave; Muhamad Kanan and Tawfik Khatib left and established the Arab National Party, whilst Hashem Mahameed formed the National Unity – National Progressive Alliance party. In the 2003 elections the party's support dropped by more than a third, with the party only just crossing the electoral threshold of 2%, and winning only two seats.

For the 2006 elections the party entered an alliance with Ahmad Tibi's Ta'al party. Running together, the alliance won four seats, three of which were taken by the United Arab List. The partys' alliance was maintained for the 2009 elections, which initially saw the Israeli Central Elections Committee ban the party from participating,[5] but this was overturned by the Supreme Court of Israel.[6] In the elections, the alliance again won four seats. Shortly before the 2013 elections, el-Sana left the party to sit as an independent Arab Democratic Party member.

After the electoral threshold to gain Knesset seats was raised from 2% to 3.25%, the party joined with Hadash, Balad, Ta'al, and the Islamic Movement to form the Joint List.[7] For the April 2019 election, it is ran on a list with Balad.[8]

Ideology and supportEdit

The party supports the two-state solution, and the creation of a Palestinian State in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital; and equal rights for Arab citizens of Israel.

Its constituency consists mostly of religious or nationalist Israeli Arabs, and enjoys particular popularity among the Bedouin – in the 2009 elections, 80% of residents of Bedouin communities voted for the party.[9] The Islamic Movement also operates in poor Arab towns and villages, as well as in Bedouin settlements, to mobilize voters. The southern faction of the Islamic Movement is now the dominant force in the party, whilst other factions include the Arab National Party.

Knesset membershipEdit

Current Knesset membersEdit

Former Knesset membersEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Carol Migdalovitz (18 May 2015). "Israel: Background and Relations with the United States" (PDF). CRS Issue Brief for Congress. Congressional Research Service. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  2. ^ Rubin, Barry (2012). Israel: An Introduction. Yale University Press. p. 219. ISBN 978-0300162301.
  3. ^ Freedman, Robert O., ed. (2008). Contemporary Israel: Domestic Politics, Foreign Policy, and Security Challenges. Westview Press. p. 14. ISBN 978-0813343853.
  4. ^ The Arab Minority in Israel and the Knesset Elections The Washington Institute
  5. ^ "Israel bans Arab parties from running in upcoming elections". Haaretz. 12 January 2009. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  6. ^ Sharon Roffe-Ofir (21 January 2009). "Hadash praises verdict on Arab parties". Ynetnews. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  7. ^ Hazboun, Areej; Estrin, Daniel (28 January 2015). "As Arab MKs unite, a new political landscape emerges". The Times of Israel. Retrieved 15 June 2015.
  8. ^ "FULL LIST: The Parties and Candidates Running in Israel's Election". Haaretz. 20 February 2019. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  9. ^ "How They Voted: See Israel election results by city/sector". Haaretz. 17 February 2009. Retrieved 15 June 2015.

External linksEdit