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Israel forces Arabs to pledge allegiance

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Israel targets its Arab citizens with a newly-introduced legislation that would force them into pledging an oath of allegiance to the Tel Aviv government.

The ultranationalist party led by Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has unveiled a bill that forces an oath of allegiance upon anyone applying for a national identity card — which is absolutely essential for transaction with the state, the school system or financial institutions.

The oath — which would necessitate that the native population profess loyalty to Israel as “a Jewish, Zionist and democratic state” — would allow the government to revoke the citizenship of anyone who takes part in Palestinian demonstrations as well as those who refrain from performing military or national service.

Arabs, who have a small number of representatives in the Israeli parliament, have responded angrily to the legislation.

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The head of the Balad party, Jamal Zahalka, said the legislation was a “record-breaking Israeli chutzpah”.

“A crazy bill by a crazy government,” said Zahalka. “[The Israelis] drove away our people and now they want to deny us even our cry of pain.”

Israel’s Arab citizens receive scant government resources and suffer discrimination in housing, employment, and education.

Lieberman has repeatedly proposed ”transferring” Arab citizens out of Israel. Similar proposals had been put forward by proponents of the Third Reich against Jews in Nazi Germany.

This article was posted: Tuesday, May 26, 2009 at 3:39 am





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