FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 10, 2017
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JVP: Israel’s New Jewish “Nation-State” Bill would enshrine apartheid
May 10, 2017–Jewish Voice for Peace issued the following statement on the new version of the “Nation-State” legislation currently advancing in the Israeli Knesset:
This legislation advances the process of cementing Israeli apartheid: a system of separate and unequal treatment under the law. This new bill legalizes segregation, demotes the status of Arabic as a national language, and reserves the right to self-determination for Jews only.
The international legal definition of apartheid refers to an “institutionalised regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.” This law does just that, by enshrining systematic discrimination and segregation as part of Israel’s Basic Law and setting the stage for the continued denial of full equal rights to Palestinians and other non-Jews under Israeli’s sovereignty.
Said JVP executive director Rebecca Vilkomerson: “This bill is a reflection of what Israel is today: a state which denies the full and equal rights of many of its citizens while anxiously tightening its grip on its system of hierarchy and dominance over millions of people living under its control. In the name of maintaining a “Jewish identity,” Israel is institutionalizing discrimination, displacement and disenfranchisement.
That is why, as Israel enters its 69th year, and 50th as an occupying power, there are 1600 Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike and tens of thousands protesting in support of them, and a thriving global movement following the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment, sanctions until there is equality and justice.”
The bill was recently approved by a legislative committee and passed a close first round vote in the Knesset.