Monday, August 20, 2018

Outbreak of protests against Israelís Nation State Bill


By Alicia Ramos Perez - July 17, 2018
TAGS:
Section: [Main News]
Tags: [protests] [Apartheid] [Israeli law] [Israeli government]

The past Saturday, July 14, around 7,000 people gathered in the streets of Tel Aviv to protest against the controversial Nation State bill currently in the Knesset.

The bill declares Israel as an exclusive nation state for the Jewish people.
 
The bill was condemned by activists, Israeli politicians, public figures and lawmakers, who joined the lines of the demonstrators.
 
The protest condemned the discriminatory and racist nature of the bill as it would enshrine Jewish supremacy.
 
The Knesset’s Bill 'Basic Law on Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People’ could potentially become part of Israel’s basic laws that will serve as a Constitution.
 
The law would confirm apartheid, as it would prioritise Jewish values over all. It will hamper any potential solution for the illegal occupation of Palestine and the establishment of democracy.
 
The civilians affected by this law would be Palestinian citizens in Israel, Palestinian residents in Jerusalem and Syrians residing in the occupied Golan Heights. This will mean that Nation State Basic Law will apply to areas classified as occupied territories according to International Law.
 
The law will also declare Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, it will allow Jewish only communities – which is already happening – and sets Hebrew as the official language. This will relegate Arabic from an official language, to one that has a “special status.”
 
Adalah, the Legal Centre for Arab Minority Rights in Israel has published a paper of the implications of this bill. “The nation-state law determines who is the sovereign who stands above the rule of law. It will be the 'law of laws’ capable of overriding any ordinary legislation.” People are not limited to 'Israeli Jews’, but rather includes 'Jewish people’ wherever they are in the world.
 
Adalah also mentioned the nation state basic law is anti-democratic. The 'Demos’ principle is the understanding of the equality among all citizens living in the sovereign, hence, it neglects the main purpose of democracy.
 
Additionally, the nation state bill will create a situation of oppression and control. This is done through establishing a constitutional identity on the Arabs without their consent.
 
“The law creates a situation in which Arabs participate, under coercion, in prompting discrimination against them,” the paper added.
 
In the month of June, the Knesset disqualified before even being discussed the 'Bill to define Israel as State for All its Citizens’.
 
This bill, which was pushed by the Joint List political bloc, called for the state of Israel to treat its Jewish and Palestinian citizens equally by also recognizing the rights of the Palestinian population living in Israel.
 
Knesset legal advisor Eyal Yinon stated for Haaretz that “both in the theoretical plane and in the specific one, it is hard not to see such a proposal as one that seeks to deny Israel’s existence as the state of the Jewish people, and therefore […] the Knesset is qualified to prevent its submission.”
 
Lead photo: Middle East Monitor.

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