Issam Makhoul

Issam Makhoul


Date of birth = 18 July 1952
Place of birth =
Year of Aliyah =
Date of death =
Place of death =
Knesset(s) = 15th, 16th
Party = Hadash
Former parties =
Gov't roles =

Issam Makhoul ( _ar. عصام مخول, _he. עיסאם מח'ול, born 18 July 1952), is an Israeli politician. As the Secretary General of Maki (the Israeli Communist Party), and together with the Central Committee of the party, he directs all communist activities in Israel as well as being responsible for relationships with communist parties in other countries. An Israeli Arab sociologist, he is a former member of the Knesset for Hadash (of which Maki is a major faction). In late 2003, he was the target of a failed assassination attempt, when a car bomb exploded beneath his vehicle as his wife was backing it out of their driveway.


Born in 1952, Makhoul studied philosophy and sociology at the University of Haifa, gaining a BA. During his time at university he also became chairman of the National Union of Arab Students. After graduating he worked as a sociologist, and was a member of the Amil Toma Institute for Political and Historical Research. He is married to Suad.

Political career

Knesset activities

Makhoul was elected to the Knesset in 1999 on Hadash's list, and re-elected in 2003. He was an active critic of Israel's nuclear weapons program, and in 2000 was the first Knesset member to attempt a break in Israel's "nuclear ambiguity" policy by prompting an open debate on Israel's atomic program. He is also a supporter of Mordechai Vanunu, the former Israeli nuclear technician who was imprisoned for revealing details of Israel's nuclear weapons program to the British press in 1986, and had called for Vanunu's release on several occasions.

Assassination attempt

On 24 October 2003, Makhoul and his wife were preparing to leave their home in central Haifa; Makhoul took his Knesset-supplied Ford, and his wife took their personal Honda, Makhoul's primary transportation prior to Knesset service. Makhoul reversed the Ford out of the driveway, and his wife started the engine of the Honda, intending to pick up their twin children from school. The Honda's ignition sparked an explosion, flooding the vehicle in flames. Suad Makhoul escaped the blast unhurt. [ [ MK's wife unhurt after bomb explodes under her car] Haaretz, 25 October 2003] In May 2005, two young Jewish men (Alexander Rabinovitch and Eliran Golan) were convicted of obtaining explosive materials for criminal purposes. [ [,7340,L-3089737,00.html Jewish terror suspect convicted] Ynetnews, 24 May 2005] The two were conspiring to murder prominent Arab figures in Haifa, including Makhoul.

Current activities

Makhoul lost his seat in the 2006 elections. Since then he has been involved in improving ties between Maki and the Communist Party of China.


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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