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Posts tagged ‘discrimination’

Elected but under attack: How space is shrinking for Palestinian MPs in Israel

As Israel gears up for its second election in a year, Amnesty International has published a new briefing highlighting what it describes as “increasing threats” to the “freedom of expression” of Palestinian members of the Knesset.

“Elected but restricted: Shrinking space for Palestinian parliamentarians in Israel’s Knesset” was released two weeks before Israelis go to the polls on 17 September, and constitutes a stark summary of what Amnesty describes as a “shrinking space” for critics, and “entrenched” discrimination. Read more

Are new Palestinian construction permits paving the way for annexation?

The recent Israeli security cabinet decision to approve construction permits for Palestinian homes in Area C of the occupied West Bank was somewhat of a rarity, “the first such decision since 2016”.

While the figure of 715 housing units in Palestinian towns sounds positive, thus far no details have been revealed – including for example, whether the plans relate to new construction or the retroactive legalisation of homes built without Israeli-issued permits.

In addition to this lack of clarity, these housing units are a drop in the ocean – according to Peace Now, “it is estimated that there are at least a thousand young Palestinian couples in need of housing in Area C each year”. Read more

Can Israel’s courts deliver justice for Palestinians?

The demolition of Palestinian-owned buildings by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem is a routine occurrence.

But in Sur Baher, a neighbourhood southeast of Jerusalem, an unprecedented mass demolition is looming – with the approval of Israel‘s top court. Read more

Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East? Netanyahu’s comments have shattered that illusion

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was back in the headlines on Sunday, after declaring on social media that “Israel is not a state of all its citizens”. The Likud leader later doubled down, telling his cabinet that Israel is “the nation state not of all its citizens, but only of the Jewish people”. Read more

In Palestine, even visiting a father’s grave can be a decades-long battle

Later this year, Israel’s Supreme Court will hear a petition filed on behalf of a 70-year-old Palestinian citizen who has one simple request: to visit her father’s grave.

The story of Salwa Salem Copty, of her family’s village and her quest to visit the grave of her father, will, unfortunately, not get the attention from journalists and diplomats that it deserves. Read more

Demolition highway: Israel plans to force Bedouin from homes

As many as 1,000 Bedouin Palestinian families are threatened with forced displacement by the Israeli government under plans for a major new highway in the Naqab (Negev) region.

The route of the new section of Road 6 already entails the forcible relocation of some 100 Bedouin families. In December 2018, however, Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel declared he intended to takeadvantage of the situation to expel a further 900 families. Read more

Why calling Israel an apartheid state or racist is not anti-Semitic

The frenzied debate over the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s definition of anti-Semitism – or more precisely, definition and illustrative examples – has centred on whether the document restricts criticism of the state of Israel and delegitimises solidarity with the Palestinians. Read more

Why has Netanyahu pushed through the Jewish Nation State bill now?

Late on Wednesday night, Israel’s parliament passed the Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People law, in a 62-55 vote hailed by prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “defining moment”.

No ordinary piece of legislation, the new bill takes its place among Israel’s quasi-constitutional set of Basic Laws. Read more

‘Jewish nation state’: How Israel enshrines apartheid into law

On Thursday, the Israeli government formally passed the “Jewish nation state”law. With the Knesset’s summer recess on the horizon, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu managed to pass the law ahead of the break.

“This is a defining moment in the annals of Zionism and the history of the state of Israel,” Netanyahu told the Knesset after the vote. Read more

Israel’s Supreme Court: Liberal bastion or an enforcer of injustice?

It is routinely hailed as Israel’s last line of defence against ultra-nationalist legislation. But does the country’s Supreme Court deserve its reputation as an upholder of liberal values?

Recent cases have illustrated how the court, rather than undermining the systematic rights abuses experienced by Palestinians, in fact oils the machine of occupation. Read more