The Ban on Israeli Arab-Palestinian Family Reunification

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In a landmark decision this week, the High Court narrowly upheld a law that bars many Palestinians from living in Israel with their Israeli Arab spouses and children.

The government argues that the law, enacted at the height of Intifada-related violence in 2002, aims to protect Israeli citizens from Palestinians who would use family unification as a pretext to enter Israel to carry out terror attacks.

But critics of the law call it collective punishment, and a racist attempt to restrict the number of Palestinians resident within Israel.

Does the potential security risk outweigh the curbs on human rights? To what extent does Israel have the right to restrict entry to Palestinians whose spouses and children are Israeli Arabs living within the confines of the state? Are security issues the true motivation for the law, or is the demographic issue the real underlying concern?



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