Israel strips Arab Israeli of citizenship, despite claims it violates international law

Israel strips Arab Israeli of citizenship, despite fears it violates international law

Aryeh Deri asked the court to strip the Arab Israeli of his citizenship

Monday, August 7, 2017

Israel has taken citizenship away from an Arab-Israeli citizen for the first time ever, despite some claiming it violates international law.

The country says he was stripped of his citizenship because he was responsible for a car and knife attack which injured four people two years ago.

Alaa Raed Ahmad Zayoud drove a car into an Israeli soldier and then stabbed three other people near Kibbutz Gan Shmuel in October 2015, according to The Independent.

The man was given a 25-year jail sentence in June last year after being convicted of four counts of attempted murder. The attack was said to be "nationalistically motivated."

Interior Minister Aryeh Deri then asked Haifa Magistrates’ Court to remove the man's citizenship. Avraham Elyakim, the deputy president at the court, agreed to this on Sunday (August 6).

Activists including Human Rights Watch have suggested the removal of his citizenship could violate international laws as it leaves Zayoud without a state.

But despite this the legal first was said to be a “suitable and proportional” action by a judge.

Elyakim also said: “For every citizen, alongside his rights, there are commitments. One of them is the significant and important commitment to maintain loyalty to the state, which is given expression also in the commitment to not carry out terror acts to harm its residents and their security.

“We cannot allow an Israeli citizen to impact the lives and dignity of other Israeli citizens and whoever decides to so in acts of terror, removes himself from the general society of the country."

Zayoud's citizenship should be removed in October. He will then be allocated temporary citizenship which can only be extended with the approval of the Interior Ministry when his sentence has been served.

However, Arab human rights group Adalah has said this move has set a "dangerous precedent" and says it is going to launch a Supreme Court appeal.