The District Court to the Ministry of Interior: the fact that a child was born in the West Bank and had lived there until the age of nine does not make him subject to the Temporary Order. His entitlement to permanent status must be reconsidered המוקד להגנת הפרט
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22.04.2012
The District Court to the Ministry of Interior: the fact that a child was born in the West Bank and had lived there until the age of nine does not make him subject to the Temporary Order. His entitlement to permanent status must be reconsidered
The District Court to the Ministry of Interior: the fact that a child was born in the West Bank and had lived there until the age of nine does not make him subject to the Temporary Order. His entitlement to permanent status must be reconsidered
Background
In 1999, having lost her husband, an East Jerusalem woman returned to live in her native city with her five children – registered at birth in the Palestinian population registry – after the family had lived for years in Hebron. In October 2004 the woman applied to the Ministry of Interior to register her children as permanent residents in the Israeli population registry. The Ministry of Interior refused to do so for the four older children, claiming that they came under the Temporary Order’s definition of “resident of the Area”.

The Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order)
In 2003 Israel enacted the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order), which prohibits grant of permanent Israeli status to Palestinians from the OPT. The Law (or Temporary Order) prevents Israelis from undergoing a “family unification” procedure and living in their homes with their spouses and children, if the latter come under the definition of “resident of the Area” – the Israeli term for anyone living in the West Bank or the Gaza Strip (excluding Jewish settlers).

In August 2005 Israel introduced several changes to the Temporary Order, including an expanded definition of the term “resident of the Area”, which includes not only Palestinians living in the OPT but also those who are only registered in the Palestinian population registry – regardless of whether they actually live there.

The case of middle son
On December 23, 2010, HaMoked petitioned the Jerusalem District Court to legalize the status of a widow’s children, including her middle son (born 1991). HaMoked argued that the Temporary Order should not be applied to the children because they were not “residents of the Area”: the application to grant them permanent Israeli status was filed back in 2004, when the term “Resident of the Area” related only to Palestinians who actually resided in the OPT. Given that at that time, all family members had already been living in East Jerusalem for more than two years, the Ministry of Interior must determine that their “center of life” was in Israel and accordingly grant them permanent status. HaMoked’s assertion was reinforced by the court’s judgment concerning the eldest daughter, which ruled that the Temporary order should not be applied to her as there was no justification to define her a “resident of the Area”, despite the fact that she had been registered in OPT and had previously lived there.

On April 15, 2012, the judgment was handed down. The court ruled the child should no come under the Temporary Order, this given the Ministry of Interior’s decision to grant the eldest sister permanent status based on the fact that her “center of life” was in Israel, and also given the 'Aweisat judgment – according to which applications to legalize the status of Israeli residents’ minor children must be considered under the Temporary Order in its version at the time the applications were filed, and also that a “Resident of the Area” as initially defined was to be determined according to the person’s actual ties to the OPT. The court thus expanded earlier case law, according to which a person is not necessarily a “resident of the Area” simply because he is registered in the Palestinian population registry. The current judgment determines that the fact that the eldest daughter was born in East Jerusalem and the middle son in the OPT is not enough to distinguish between them as regards the Law’s applicability. The justice ordered the Ministry of Interior to reconsider whether the child was entitled to Israeli status based on his “center of life” at the time the application was filed.

Conclusion
The case of the middle son will be transferred for reconsideration by the Ministry of Interior in the framework of a “family unification” application. Thereupon it will be decided whether the child is finally to receive permanent status in Israel.

Thus far, three of the child’s siblings have received permanent status in Israel. His eldest brother, born 1988, remains without status, condemned to live in Israel without permission to work and without social security rights and health insurance. It is to be hoped that the Ministry of Interior will stop obstructing the actualization of his right to status in Israel and will apply to him the same law it applied to the rest of the family who have been registered as permanent residents.
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Background
In 1999, having lost her husband, an East Jerusalem woman returned to live in her native city with her five children – registered at birth in the Palestinian population registry – after the family had lived for years in Hebron. In October 2004 the woman applied to the Ministry of Interior to register her children as permanent residents in the Israeli population registry. The Ministry of Interior refused to do so for the four older children, claiming that they came under the Temporary Order’s definition of “resident of the Area”.

The Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order)
In 2003 Israel enacted the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law (Temporary Order), which prohibits grant of permanent Israeli status to Palestinians from the OPT. The Law (or Temporary Order) prevents Israelis from undergoing a “family unification” procedure and living in their homes with their spouses and children, if the latter come under the definition of “resident of the Area” – the Israeli term for anyone living in the West Bank or the Gaza Strip (excluding Jewish settlers).

In August 2005 Israel introduced several changes to the Temporary Order, including an expanded definition of the term “resident of the Area”, which includes not only Palestinians living in the OPT but also those who are only registered in the Palestinian population registry – regardless of whether they actually live there.

The case of middle son
On December 23, 2010, HaMoked petitioned the Jerusalem District Court to legalize the status of a widow’s children, including her middle son (born 1991). HaMoked argued that the Temporary Order should not be applied to the children because they were not “residents of the Area”: the application to grant them permanent Israeli status was filed back in 2004, when the term “Resident of the Area” related only to Palestinians who actually resided in the OPT. Given that at that time, all family members had already been living in East Jerusalem for more than two years, the Ministry of Interior must determine that their “center of life” was in Israel and accordingly grant them permanent status. HaMoked’s assertion was reinforced by the court’s judgment concerning the eldest daughter, which ruled that the Temporary order should not be applied to her as there was no justification to define her a “resident of the Area”, despite the fact that she had been registered in OPT and had previously lived there.

On April 15, 2012, the judgment was handed down. The court ruled the child should no come under the Temporary Order, this given the Ministry of Interior’s decision to grant the eldest sister permanent status based on the fact that her “center of life” was in Israel, and also given the 'Aweisat judgment – according to which applications to legalize the status of Israeli residents’ minor children must be considered under the Temporary Order in its version at the time the applications were filed, and also that a “Resident of the Area” as initially defined was to be determined according to the person’s actual ties to the OPT. The court thus expanded earlier case law, according to which a person is not necessarily a “resident of the Area” simply because he is registered in the Palestinian population registry. The current judgment determines that the fact that the eldest daughter was born in East Jerusalem and the middle son in the OPT is not enough to distinguish between them as regards the Law’s applicability. The justice ordered the Ministry of Interior to reconsider whether the child was entitled to Israeli status based on his “center of life” at the time the application was filed.

Conclusion
The case of the middle son will be transferred for reconsideration by the Ministry of Interior in the framework of a “family unification” application. Thereupon it will be decided whether the child is finally to receive permanent status in Israel.

Thus far, three of the child’s siblings have received permanent status in Israel. His eldest brother, born 1988, remains without status, condemned to live in Israel without permission to work and without social security rights and health insurance. It is to be hoped that the Ministry of Interior will stop obstructing the actualization of his right to status in Israel and will apply to him the same law it applied to the rest of the family who have been registered as permanent residents.
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