Center for the Defence of the Individual - HaMoked contested revocation of the permanent status of a Palestinian Jerusalemite on the grounds of “breach of allegiance to the State of Israel”
العربية HE wheel chair icon
חזרה לעמוד הקודם

HaMoked contested revocation of the permanent status of a Palestinian Jerusalemite on the grounds of “breach of allegiance to the State of Israel”

On November 30, 2023, HaMoked sent the Minister of Interior written arguments against the Minister’s notice of November 16, 2023, regarding his intention to revoke on the grounds of “breach of allegiance to the State” the permanent residency status of a Palestinian man from East Jerusalem, who is incarcerated while awaiting his sentencing in a criminal trial. HaMoked argued that the Minister must reverse his notice, as the accumulation of facts in this matter suggests that the entire proceeding is highly problematic, on the threshold of legality if not beyond, both substantively and procedurally. 

HaMoked argued first that the proceeding was invalid given that it was based on the 2018 Amendment to the Entry into Israel Law, the constitutionality of which was still before the High Court of Justice (HCJ) in the framework of HaMoked’s principled petition of February 2023. HaMoked noted that under these circumstances, the man could not even petition the Court against the revocation of his status, before the HCJ ruled on the matter. 

In its arguments HaMoked relied largely on the Supreme Court judgment in Zayud, which dealt with the constitutionality of the parallel amendment for the revocation of citizenship over breach of allegiance. In the judgment, the Court ruled that the only worthy purpose for revoking citizenship on such grounds was a declarative purpose and that it required that the person be given permanent status in lieu of their revoked citizenship. In the case in hand, argued HaMoked, the procedure and the underlying law were not intended for this purpose, which is irrelevant to the issue, and that revocation of permanent residency on such grounds was an unacceptable act of punishment and deterrence that were improperly implemented in the sphere of immigration and status law, rather than in the sphere of penal law. HaMoked argued that the fact that this administrative proceeding was initiated before the man received his sentence in the criminal proceeding, constituted a severe deviation from the principle laid out in Zayud, whereby a proceeding of status revocation for breach of allegiance should take place within the framework of the criminal proceeding – and hence, should certainly not take place before it is concluded.  HaMoked also listed several procedural flaws attending the procedure, which exacerbated the severe violation of the man’s rights to argue his case and to due process. These include the fact that the notice was given to an incarcerated man in Hebrew only and without any additional explanation and without the Israel Prison Service allowing him to seek legal counsel – partly, as a result of the isolation of “Security” prisoners from contact with the outside world, implemented by the IPS following the October 7th attacks and the current war.

HaMoked argued this was an arbitrary act undermining the principle of equality before the law, as indicated by the fact that the Minister sent such a notice selectively to only two people, this man and another one. Given that one of the accusations initially leveled against the man was that he had planned to attack the Israeli Minister of Public Security, it also seems this step was an act of political persecution. Furthermore, the fact that the intention to revoke his status was reported in the media and published on the Ministry of Interior’s website, before the man himself received the notice, strengthens the concern that the measure was motivated by revenge and a desire to appease certain publics.