Israeli court lifts ban on Arab parties | world | Hindustan Times
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Israeli court lifts ban on Arab parties

Israel's Supreme Court has ruled that two Arab parties can run in upcoming elections. The parties were recently barred by a parliamentary committee on the grounds that they "supported terrorism."

world Updated: Jan 22, 2009 09:22 IST

Israel's Supreme Court has ruled that two Arab parties can run in upcoming elections.

The parties were recently barred by a parliamentary committee on the grounds that they "supported terrorism."

The ban came during Israel's offensive against Hamas militants in Gaza and reflected the heightened tensions between Israel's Jewish majority and Arab minority. Many Israeli Arabs have relatives in the Palestinian territories and identify with their cause.

Lawmakers from the Arab parties have traveled to some of Israel's staunchest enemies, including Lebanon and Syria.

A spokesman for Israel's Courts Administration says judges overturned the ban in an unanimous vote on Wednesday.