YESHAYAHU-SHAR ʿABI, ISRAEL (1908–1979), Israeli politician, member of the First to Eighth Knessets. Yeshayahu was born in Sadan, *Yemen, where he received a traditional ḥeder education and attended the yeshivah of Rabbi Yihye Kafah. In Yemen he was active in the Dor De'ah Movement. In 1929 he immigrated to Palestine and worked as a farm laborer in the vineyards and on road construction. Soon, however, Yeshayahu entered political life as a member of Mapai, and was active in the Histadrut, serving from 1934 to 1948 as head of the department for immigrants from Yemen and other Muslim countries. In 1948 he was appointed by David Ben-Gurion as deputy government secretary in charge of contacts with the Knesset, and in 1949 was elected to the First Knesset on the Mapai list. From 1948 to 1952 he was active in organizing the immigration of the Jews from Yemen and was sent to Aden to organize Operation "Magic Carpet." He served as a deputy speaker in the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Knessets, and served on various Knesset committees. In 1967, he was appointed minister of postal services, holding the position until January 1970, when he was appointed secretary-general of the Israel Labor Party. In the Seventh Knesset he served as chairman of the Knesset House Committee, until, following the death of Re'uven Barkat, he was appointed speaker of the Knesset in 1972. He remained in the position until after the elections to the Ninth Knesset in 1977.
Among his writings are Mi-Teiman le-Ẓiyyon (prepared with Shimon Garidi, 1938) and Ba'al ha-Taltalim ve-Od Sippurim ("The Curly One and Other Stories," 1979). He was co-editor with Yosef Tobi of Yahadut Teiman: Pirkei Mehkar ve-Iyyun ("The Jewry of Yemen: Chapters of Research and Study," 1975).
Y. Gal-Ron, Kitvei Yisrael Yeshayahu (1984).