Global Rights Watch (GRW) has warned of the serious outcomes of the Israeli Supreme Court’s decision to revoke citizenship of Palestinians who “committed an act that constitutes a breach of loyalty to the State of Israel”.
The court order states that a person convicted of “breach of trusts against the State of Israel, such as an act of terror, an act of treason or serious espionage, or acquisition of citizenship in a hostile state” could face a cancelation of his citizenship.
The decision came after Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), filed two different appeals for cases of Palestinian citizens of Israel who were convicted of being involved in two separate attacks.
The two are Muhammad Mafaraja, who set an explosive device on a bus in Tel Aviv in 2012, injuring 24 people, and Alaa Ziud, who carried out a stabbing attack at the Gan Shmuel Junction in northern Israel in 2015, injuring four people.
However, the court canceled the Israeli interior ministry’s requests to revoke their citizenship due to “failures” in the processes of submission.
Commenting on the decision, Arab MK Dr Yousef Jabareen said that “the amendment of the Citizenship Law came as part of the Israeli retaliatory measures against Arab citizens,” stressing that it is an unconstitutional decision.
In this regard, we consider the decision as dangerous escalation against Arab citizens of Israel, as it paves the way for the use of an illegitimate law that violates international law.
The decision further confirms the centrality of unequal citizenship status in Israel’s apartheid system, which is not only limited to the occupied Palestinians territories (oPt), but also affects Palestinian citizens of Israel in 1948 Palestine.