During a hearing of HaMoked’s petition: the HCJ instructs the state to consider exceptions to the blanket ban on family unification in Israel with people living in or registered as residents of the Gaza Strip המוקד להגנת הפרט عر HE wheel chair icon
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22.05.2014
During a hearing of HaMoked’s petition: the HCJ instructs the state to consider exceptions to the blanket ban on family unification in Israel with people living in or registered as residents of the Gaza Strip
During a hearing of HaMoked’s petition: the HCJ instructs the state to consider exceptions to the blanket ban on family unification in Israel with people living in or registered as residents of the Gaza Strip
Since 2008, Israel has been refusing all family unification applications with residents of the Gaza Strip. The ban applies equally to people who live in the Gaza Strip and those who are registered as Gaza residents though not actively living there.

On June 6, 2013, HaMoked petitioned the High Court of Justice (HCJ) requesting it to strike down Government Resolution No. 3598 which instructs the Minister of Interior to refuse such applications. HaMoked argued that the resolution far exceeds the provisions of the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order) 5763-2003. While the Law allows classifying people as dangerous based on where they live (and therefore refuse applications for family unification with them in Israel), the resolution classifies people as dangerous based on the mere fact that they are registered as residents of the Gaza Strip in the population registry, even if they do not reside there at all.

HaMoked argued in the petition that the government resolution was general and indiscriminate and that it did not allow the Minister of Interior to use discretion and weigh every case individually. HaMoked stressed that the resolution unreasonably and disproportionately violated fundamental rights, primarily the right to family life, without a legal basis, and therefore must be struck down.

The state argued in response that the petition must be rejected as the relevant section of the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, which provides the basis for Resolution 3598, allowed the Minister of Interior to “adequately respond to the security needs of the State of Israel and its citizens”. The state argued that considering every case on its merits, as HaMoked had demanded, would void the foundational distinction between residents of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

On May 22, 2014, during a hearing of the petition, the court indicated that it was not likely to strike down the government resolution. However, it did instruct the state to consider the formulation of a specific policy for two exceptions – people from Gaza whose family unification applications were filed prior to the government resolution, and people who are registered in the Gaza Strip but have not resided there for an extended period of time. The state undertook to submit an updating response with respect to the questions discussed in the hearing.
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Since 2008, Israel has been refusing all family unification applications with residents of the Gaza Strip. The ban applies equally to people who live in the Gaza Strip and those who are registered as Gaza residents though not actively living there.

On June 6, 2013, HaMoked petitioned the High Court of Justice (HCJ) requesting it to strike down Government Resolution No. 3598 which instructs the Minister of Interior to refuse such applications. HaMoked argued that the resolution far exceeds the provisions of the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order) 5763-2003. While the Law allows classifying people as dangerous based on where they live (and therefore refuse applications for family unification with them in Israel), the resolution classifies people as dangerous based on the mere fact that they are registered as residents of the Gaza Strip in the population registry, even if they do not reside there at all.

HaMoked argued in the petition that the government resolution was general and indiscriminate and that it did not allow the Minister of Interior to use discretion and weigh every case individually. HaMoked stressed that the resolution unreasonably and disproportionately violated fundamental rights, primarily the right to family life, without a legal basis, and therefore must be struck down.

The state argued in response that the petition must be rejected as the relevant section of the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, which provides the basis for Resolution 3598, allowed the Minister of Interior to “adequately respond to the security needs of the State of Israel and its citizens”. The state argued that considering every case on its merits, as HaMoked had demanded, would void the foundational distinction between residents of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

On May 22, 2014, during a hearing of the petition, the court indicated that it was not likely to strike down the government resolution. However, it did instruct the state to consider the formulation of a specific policy for two exceptions – people from Gaza whose family unification applications were filed prior to the government resolution, and people who are registered in the Gaza Strip but have not resided there for an extended period of time. The state undertook to submit an updating response with respect to the questions discussed in the hearing.
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