Israel’s renewal of law restricting family unification condemned as ‘apartheid’

Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, renewed the controversial “Citizenship and Entry into Israel” law, which sets severe limitations on Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory married to Israeli citizens, for the 14th year on Monday, as Palestinian members of parliament denounced the move as “racist” and a show of “apartheid” against Palestinian citizens of Israel.  The law was extended by a vote of 57 in favor and 16 against, according to a statement released by the Knesset.

The law applies to Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip, and foreign nationals from Iran, Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq — and can apply to other nationalities originating from countries the Israeli government deems a security threat. However, the law has primarily affected Palestinian citizens of Israel, making up 20 percent of the Israeli population, who often marry Palestinians from the occupied West Bank.
Although the Israeli Supreme Court prevented the provision from being introduced as permanent legislation, the Israeli government has renewed the temporary security measure every year since 2004.
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