Languages
Page last updated at 11:13 GMT, Wednesday, 17 June 2009 12:13 UK

Israeli minister in Arab slur row

Avigdor Lieberman visit to London (13.05.09)
Yisrael Beiteinu's policies have sparked anger around the world

Israel's internal security minister has apologised after being caught on film using the word "Araboosh" - highly offensive Hebrew slang for Arabs.

While Yitzhak Aharonovitch was on a tour meeting police, one plain clothes officer apologised to him for his scruffy appearance.

"What do you mean dirty? You look like a real Araboosh," the minister was heard to respond.

He is a member of Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's far right party.

Mr Aharonovitch later said he wished to "apologise to anyone who was hurt".

"This remark does not reflect my positions or world view," the minister said in a statement.

His far-right party, Yisrael Beiteinu, has been under fire for its policies, which have raised concerns over racism in Israel and around the world.

The party wants to make all Israeli citizens swear allegiance to Israel as a Jewish state, something that most of the fifth of the population who are Israeli-Arabs would find very difficult to do.

It has also pushed for a law to ban commemorations of the Nakba, or "catastrophe", as Palestinians call the events of 1948, when Israel was created and hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were forced from their homes in what had been British-ruled Palestine.



Print Sponsor



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific