An Israeli minister slammed elected representatives of the country’s Palestinian citizens in Israel as “ingrates” in social media post Tuesday evening.
The right-wing news outlet Arutz Sheva said that the Israeli Transportation Minister Bezalel Smotrich was responding to an earlier tweet by Joint List chair Ayman Odeh.
Odeh, whose alliance looks to have secured a historic 15 seats in the Knesset, was himself responding to racist comments by Blue and White Chair Benny Gantz.
Gantz had said that only a “Jewish majority” would be able to beat the corrupt Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The leader of the Israeli largest opposition faction has consistently ruled out sitting in a coalition government with the Joint List, which largely represents Palestinian citizens in Israel.
After Israel’s third election in a year produced a boost for Likud, but no clear majority for either the right-wing bloc or opposition bloc, Odeh tweeted: “Nobody has a Jewish majority”.
Following Odeh’s tweet, Smotrich – a notorious hard-right nationalist and supporter of the West Bank settlement enterprise – wrote: “Ayman, you know very well that you and your ingrate friends live here in a prosperous democracy with civil rights and a good life just because there is a Jewish majority here.”
Smotrich added that “otherwise your life would look like the lives of most of your brethren in the surrounding Arab countries.”
“Maybe if you try a little you will start to appreciate the Jewish majority here,” he added.