El-Kurd Twins, Naftali Bennett on Time’s 100 Influential People List
Twin Palestinian rights activists Muna and Mohammed El-Kurd, whose family is in danger of being evicted from their home in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, and Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett appear on the Time Magazine list of 100 Most Influential People of 2021.
Bennett’s entry in the leaders section was written by Arab Israeli Knesset member Mansour Abbas, whose United Arab List party joined Bennett’s unity government this year, the first Arab party to join an Israeli coalition government.
“In the end, it all comes down to courage,” Abbas wrote. “After four elections in two years, a bold act was needed to unite a country frayed by political stalemate and brought to a desperate standstill. Something dramatic needed to change, but more importantly, someone courageous needed to make that change. Naftali Bennett threw himself into a political firestorm in order to forge previously unimaginable ties between Israel’s left and right, Arabs and Jews, religious and secular. He formed one of the most diverse governments in Israel’s history.”
The El-Kurd twins, 23, appear in the icons section. “Through online posts and media appearances, sibling activists Mohammed and Muna El-Kurd provided the world with a window into living under occupation in East Jerusalem this spring – helping to prompt an international shift in rhetoric in regard to Israel and Palestine,” their entry reads.
Newly elected hard-line Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi appears on the list, as does Abdul Ghani Baradar, one of the founders of the Taliban in Afghanistan.
“A quiet, secretive man who rarely gives public statements or interviews, Baradar nonetheless represents a more moderate current within the Taliban, the one that will be thrust into the limelight to win Western support and desperately needed financial aid,” reads the entry on Baradar.
Also appearing on the list is Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, who in 2019 was arrested and sentenced to 38 years in prison and 148 lashes for her work to advance the rights of women in Iran.