The Coalition Against Racism: The Nationality Law Is A Racist Law, Oppositional And Damaging
first Published :
17/05/2017 Last Updated: 17/05/2017
On Sunday, May 6, 2017, the Ministers’ Legislative Affairs
Committee approved the proposal of “The Nationality Law,” which was presented
by MK Avi Dichter of the Likud, and others.
The Law will be brought to the Knesset for an initial reading and will
be returned for discussion in Committee during the current Knesset session ...
The suggested law decrees that “the State of Israel is the
national home of the Jewish people” and also that “the right to actualize
national self-definition in the State of Israel belongs solely to the Jewish
people.” Likewise, the proposal
addresses, among other things, the matter of language and holds that Hebrew is
the sole official language. In the
language of the proposal: “Hebrew is the language of the State.” [It also] changes
and demotes the status and position of Arabic from an official language to a
language with special standing: “Arabic has a special position in the State.” The proposal also addresses the matter of
separate living, that is, the proposed law holds that a group from a particular
community that lives in a settlement comprised of that particular community can
prevent people from another community from coming to live in their community
because of their belonging to a different community, according to the language
of the law: “The State is allowed to permit a community, especially those of
the same religion or the same nationality, to establish a separate
community-based settlement,” meaning here to give the seal of approval in a
Basic Law to discrimination in housing and in the right to equality in housing.
We at the Coalition Against Racism declare that the Nationality
Law is a racist law, oppositional and damaging, because it comes to damage the
legal position of Arab citizens of Israel and to broad a message of
exclusion and distancing of Arab citizens of Israel. We are speaking of a law being added to the
legal corpus that, instead of binding together the various parts of Israeli
society, creates divisiveness and alienation between various communities, and
between them and the country. A law
whose damaging effect is far greater than its benefit.