Israel’s Central Elections Committee issued an injunction on Sunday against an initiative to bus 15,000 Arab voters to voting booths on Tuesday, ruling that the initiative violated election laws.
The injunction, against NGO Zazim, came following a petition submitted by the Likud Party. Zazim is heavily funded by the U.S.-based New Israel Fund.
In 2017, the Knesset passed the “V15” law aimed at preventing foreign-funded non-party political organizations from interfering in Israeli elections. The law was passed following the efforts of V15, a U.S.-funded group, to defeat Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the 2015 national elections.
Efforts against Zazim’s initiative began ahead of the previous national elections on April 9, when the Zionist NGO Im Tirtzu filed a petition to the Central Elections Committee. When the committee ruled that only political parties could submit petitions, the Likud joined the NGO petition, but to no avail.
However, due to the increased activity by Zazim, the committee, led by Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer, accepted the original argument and ruled that the group’s initiative was in violation of the law.
Im Tirtzu’s legal division hailed the ruling as “a large victory for Israeli democracy.”
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