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Arab women's new face in the Knesset

In an interview with Al-Monitor, Aida Touma-Sliman, social activist and soon to be Knesset member, explains her long-standing political career in the Arab sector, battling violence against women and promoting coexistence.
Arab-Israeli parliament members and other candidates join their hands after it was announced that a joint political slate of all the Arab parties will be running in the upcoming elections, during a news conference in Nazareth,  January 23, 2015. Four political parties that mostly represent Israel's Arab minority have decided to run together in elections on March 17, creating a potential counter-weight to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his right-wing allies. Opinion polls suggest the united Arab list

Among Arab Israelis, Aida Touma-Sliman is a symbol of an independent, strong and assertive woman. For many Israelis, however, she was quite an anonymous figure until she was named second on the Hadash Party slate and fifth on the joint Arab slate.

Touma-Sliman's admirers, who have followed her active and intensive career over the years, including her failed attempts to garner a spot on the Hadash Knesset list, sighed with satisfaction after the March 17 elections. At last, Touma-Sliman will be part of the Arab-Jewish Joint List, which garnered 13 Knesset seats. They are convinced that she will make an active and constructive parliamentarian.

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