Veteran dovish Israeli politician Yossi Sarid dies, aged 75
JERUSALEM (AP) — Yossi Sarid, a former government minister who remained a leading critic of Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians until his final days, has died at age 75, his son said Friday.
His son Yishai told Army Radio he died Friday night after suffering from a heart condition in recent years. “Dad was a fighter. He got up in the morning not for himself but really for the people of Israel and the public,” he said.
Sarid was one of the leaders of the Israeli peace camp and was among the most vocal in advocating Israeli territorial concessions to resolve the conflict with the Palestinians.
He was known for the sharp and fiery comments he would fling at political opponents. His toughest exchanges were with hawkish lawmakers and ultra-Orthodox Jewish members of parliament.
Sarid served in parliament for over four decades, including posts as education minister and environment minister. He led the dovish Meretz party before he retired in 2006.
He was an influential columnist for the Haaretz daily after he retired from politics and was a commentator on Army Radio.
Sarid was a strong critic of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Speaking with The Associated Press last year, Sarid bemoaned the way Israel has veered sharply to the right in recent years. “I can hardly recognize the face of my country,” he said.
Zahava Galon of Meretz said the funeral will be held on Sunday.