Suggested priorities for Salah eddine slate for Jerusalem elections
by Daoud Kuttab
This is the suggested program agreed to by the Palestinian Salah Eddine List for Jeruslem’s municipal elections due to take place on October 30th
Every five years, the Israeli municipality elections occur. Historically, many Palestinians have chosen to boycott these elections, given that East Jerusalem is an occupied city. In addition, reflecting on the experiences of Arab Israelis in the Knesset, many believe that our representation won’t significantly impact our community’s well-being and might mistakably depict Israel as democratic. However, this year, a group of Palestinians from East Jerusalem aims to introduce a fresh perspective. We intend to openly discuss the elections and explore the possibility of both running and backing a list. We see the election campaign as a platform to enlighten our community and foster innovative thinking.
We would like to announce our candidacy in the Jerusalem municipality elections under the banner of the “Salah eddine List”. This name is inspired by the historic liberator of Jerusalem, a figure celebrated for his courage, wisdom, and tolerance. As part of our commitment to transparency and integrity, we have outlined five foundational guidelines for our campaign. These guidelines will remain unwavering both during the campaign and, should we secure a majority in the municipality council, throughout our term in office.
The Five Guarantees of the Salah eddine List:
1. Election Process: We respect the voice of our Palestinian people. Should there be a consensus against our participation after community discussions, we will withdraw our nomination.
2. Stance on East Jerusalem: We view East Jerusalem as an occupied city that was annexed illegally. We recognize it as the capital of Palestine.
3. Alignment with International Law: All decisions and positions on our list will align with Palestinian stances that adhere to international law.
4. Purpose of Our Presence: Our participation in the municipality is to assert the Palestinian right to self-determination and to safeguard Jerusalem’s heritage and future.
5. Transparent Funding: Our campaign and activities will be financed solely by contributions from the people of Jerusalem and its steadfast community members.
Additionally, as we move into office on the 106th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration this coming November, we pledge to address ten crucial issues immediately upon taking office.
Our Commitments to Our Community Post-Election:
1. Facilitating Elections: Prioritize facilitating elections in East Jerusalem, paving the way for Palestinian reconciliation.
2. Tax Reforms: Abolish the Arnona Tax for neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, especially those historically marginalized and underfunded by the municipality. Add Taxes on expensive neighborhoods and settlements.
3. Building Permit Restrictions: Halt the issuance of building permits in all Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem.
4. Protection of Homes: End all home demolitions in East Jerusalem.
5. Cultural Recognition: Rename streets in East Jerusalem to better represent our Palestinian heritage and current times.
6. Demanding Services: Urge Israel, in its capacity as an occupying power, to fulfill its obligations in providing essential services to the residents.
7. Policy Reforms: Unearth and revoke all discriminatory policies enforced by the municipality.
8. Land Deal Review: Thoroughly investigate and nullify any unjust land deals.
9. Protection of Sacred Sites: Safeguard Muslim and Christian holy sites and all significant places of Palestinian heritage in East Jerusalem.
10. Branding Jerusalem: Revamp the Municipality’s logo and flags to truly represent the essence of Jerusalem.