Israel Revokes Residency of Palestinian Who Transported Suicide Bomber in 2001

Following attack on Dolphinarium Club in Tel Aviv in 2001, Mohammed Nadi was convicted of crimes including assisting homicide, assisting in causing severe bodily harm, and assisting illegal entry of a Palestinian.

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Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan
Public Security Minister Gilad ErdanCredit: Emil Salman

Interior Minister Gilad Erdan on Sunday revoked the permanent residency of East Jerusalem resident Mohammed Nadi, the Palestinian driver who transported the suicide bomber who carried out the attack on the Dolphinarium club in Tel Aviv in 2001, killing 21 people.

A view of the Dolphinarium from the northern side.Credit: Nir Keidar

Nadi was convicted of crimes including assisting homicide, assisting in causing severe bodily harm, and assisting illegal entry of a Palestinian. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

In announcing the revocation of residency, Minister Erdan wrote to Nadi: "Under these circumstances, in light of the severity of your deeds and the callous breach of trust for the State of Israel, as a resident of the state I have decided to use my authority and cancel you license for permanent residency in Israel."

In effect, Erdan's decision means that Nadi will no longer be listed in the Population Registry, he will lose his blue identification card, and will no be longer eligible for social benefits (national and health insurances).

"A wave of terror incitement is washing over Israel, and residents of the state are involved in carrying out attacks, assisting and justifying them, and inciting others to carrying out crimes and murder. These people cannot continue to enjoy the status of permanent residents of the state, and I will do everything in my power to strip them of their residency and prevent them from receiving all of the economic benefits granted by the state for this residency."

Erdan's decision regarding Nadi comes just a day after the interior minister said that he had asked his staff to look into how he can extend his powers and revoke the permanent residency and social benefits of East Jerusalem Arabs who encourage terror and incitement to violence.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to present a bill in the near future that seeks to implement this revocation from anyone who commits terror and serious offenses with nationalist motives and for their families.

Officials in the Prime Minister’s Office said Erdan’s proposal came following a meeting called by Netanyahu with Erdan and Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, in which Erdan was directed to move ahead on the matter.

On Friday, Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat issued a similar call for Israel to revoke the citizenship of terrorists’ families who support attacks against Israelis.

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