Israeli authorities have revoked the residency status of a Palestinian woman from East Jerusalem after having lived in the city for 23 years, less than two weeks after her husband was sentenced to nine months in an Israeli prison over activity on Facebook.
The Israeli Ministry of the Interior refused 43-year-old Muna Abdullah al-Shalabi’s “family unification” application citing “security” reasons.
Her husband, Omar al-Shalabi, is the former secretary-general of Fatah in Jerusalem, and was earlier this month sentenced to nine months in an Israeli prison for allegedly inciting anti-Jewish violence and supporting “terror” in posts and comments on Facebook.
Muna al-Shalabi said that her ban from Jerusalem had been enacted to exert further pressure on her husband.
Israelis authorities claim that she was given the chance to defend her application in February but that she did not come forward, leading them to refuse it.
However, al-Shalabi denied that she had been given any earlier opportunity to challenge the ban, saying that she had not received any orders from the Ministry of the Interior before the most recent one.
She has been living in the al-Suwwana neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem since she married her Jerusalem-resident husband 23 years ago.
Until the ban, she had been allowed to live in East Jerusalem through the “family unification” application process.
The process requires “meticulous examinations that often [takes] several years to complete,” and has been restricted to men aged 35 and women aged 25 since 2005, according to Israeli rights group B’Tselem.
B’Tselem reported that thousands of Palestinians “are denied the possibility of even submitting a request and cannot live with their spouses in Israel,” adding that the process “violates the right of tens of thousands of persons to family life.”
Al-Shalabi has been given 21 days to present her objections to the ban.
The residency status of 107 Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem was revoked in 2014, adding to the14,309since 1967.
(Ma’an – www.maannews.org)