Citizenship Betrayed: Israel's Emerging Immigration and Citizenship Regime

Yoav Peled


In this Article I argue that the citizenship status of Israel’s Palestinian citizens has been eroding since the "events" of October 2000 and that, as a result, Israel, within its rpe-1967 borders, may be moving from a form of democracy that has been termed "ethnic democracy" towards a form of non-democratic state that has been termed "ethnocracy." My argument is based primarily on two legal documents: the new Citizenship and Entry into Israel (Temporary Order) Law, 2003, which denies Palestinian citizens the right to unite with their closest family members who are residents of the Occupied Territories, and the decision of the High Court of Justice that upheld the constitutionality of this law in 2006. Two other developments that seem to support my thesis are analyzed as well: the "events" of October 2000 themselves and the report of the state commission of inquiry that investigated these events (the Or Commission), and the plan, advanced by Yvette Lieberman and his political party, "Yisrael Beytenu," to shift the border between Israel and the West Bank westward, depriving tens of thousands of citizen-Palestinians of their Israeli citizenship.

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