Wednesday, July 6, 2022


MP’s visit to Israel in Arab newspaper

AMMAN, Sept. 20 (Iraqi News) – An Omani newspaper gave prominence in its Saturday issue to an Iraqi Parliament decision ordering the suspension of the membership of a parliamentarian in light of his participation in an international anti-terror conference in Israel two weeks ago. Mohammed al-Daami, an Iraqi academician and a writer for the Omani al-Watan newspaper, said that the visit made by Iraqi lawmaker Mathal al-Alusi to Israel has sparked heated controversy in Iraqi political circles. Some opinion writers and columnists expressed their approval of Alusi’s initiative, calling on others to follow suit, the author said. Daami said that some Iraqi Jews, including a writer who writes under the pen name Hatim Abdelwahid, do not only give their blessing to Alusi’s initiative, but urge Iraqis to get rid of the political, religious and ethnic heritage that they said is based on anti-Jewish feelings.   On Sunday, the Iraqi Parliament voted to strip Alusi of immunity and to prevent him from traveling abroad due to a visit he paid to Israel. After a combative session, parliamentarians voted to lift Alusi’s parliamentary immunity and seek charges against him for visiting the Jewish state. They also said that the secular politician should be prevented from traveling abroad again. Alusi, who accused some MPs of being in the pocket of Iran, reacted angrily during the parliamentary session, which was broadcast live on Iraqi TV. Alusi is the leader of the Iraqi Umma Party, which holds only one seat in the 275-member Parliament. Alusi’s first visit to Israel in 2004 got him evicted from the post he held in Iraq’s first post-Saddam Hussein government and earned him the wrath of many Iraqis, as well as a host of assassination attempts. The first Iraqi politician to publicly visit Israel, Alusi could not have undertaken this visit lightly. After speaking at the same counter terrorism conference on his first visit to Israel, gunmen murdered his two sons, Ayman 30, and Jamal, 22, apparently in payback for his violating the historic taboo in Iraq against advocating cooperation with Israel.   SS (S) 1

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