EU Concerned by Israeli Law That Can Revoke J’slm Residency Status

Last week, the Knesset passed new legislation which empowers the Israeli Minister of Interior to revoke the permanent residency status of persons allegedly involved in “terrorism, treason or espionage.”

Israeli police check the person and identity document of a Palestinian woman at the Lions' Gate entrance to Jerusalem's Old City, July 2017.

Israeli police check the person and identity document of a Palestinian woman at the Lions’ Gate entrance to Jerusalem’s Old City, July 2017. (Photo: Activestills)

In response to the passage of the new Israeli law, the European Union issued a statement last weekend expressing its grave concern, parts of which are reproduced below:

“The European Union rejects terrorism in all its forms, and the crimes set out in this legislation are very serious. However, the new law could make the residency status of Palestinians in East Jerusalem, a protected population under International Humanitarian Law, even more precarious than it already is today. The new law could be used to further compromise the Palestinian presence in East Jerusalem, which would further undermine the prospects of a two-state solution.”

“In line with international law, the European Union does not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967, including East Jerusalem, and does not consider them to be part of Israel’s territory, irrespective of their legal status under domestic Israeli law.”

“The European Union will closely monitor if and how this new law is applied to Palestinians in East Jerusalem.”

During the Knesset debate which preceded its passage, Hadash MK Dov Khenin (Joint List) called the law “bad and dangerous legislation. The mechanism created by this law will bring the Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem into the worst of all possible worlds. Residents of East Jerusalem live there not because they chose to be Israelis but because it is their home. You are in effect creating an obligation of loyalty for people for whom there is no connection of loyalty between them and the State of Israel.”