Arab MK Petitions High Court to Remove Travel Ban

In the middle, MK Yousef Jabareen. (Photo: via Twitter)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

Arab member of Knesset  Yousef Jabareen will petition Israel’s High Court of Justice on Sunday against a decision of the Knesset’s ethics committee to keep him from traveling to the United States for a lecture tour sponsored by Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP).

In January, the committee approved an amendment to its rules which made it possible to bar funding from pro-BDS organizations for MKs’ trips abroad to participate in conferences or talks.

MK Jabareen denounced the decision, taken in March, as another attempt to limit the actions of Arab MKs, calling it “an expression of the tyranny of the majority that wants to prevent us from representing our voting public in a significant and appropriate manner.”

The petition, which will be filed by lawyers from the rights group, Adalah, states:

“This limitation does not derive from the fact that there is in his expressions or actions any ethical or criminal violation, or because of the existence of any ban on a Knesset member to be in contact with the organization financing [the events],”

“It only stems from the body that is funding the trip having a certain political position toward the policy of the government of Israel, and it is numbered among those calling for a boycott of the State of Israel in order to put an end to the occupation of the 1967 territories.”

JVP is a US-based non-governmental organization that defines itself as a “diverse and democratic community of activists inspired by Jewish tradition to work together for peace, social justice, and human rights.”

At the end of 2017, JVP had 250,000 email supporters; 13,500 members; 75 chapters across the US; 500,000 social media followers; and an annual budget of over $2 million.

Earlier this year, MK Jabareen, who has a PhD in law, proposed a bill that demands equal rights for the Arab minority in Israel, in response to the rising discriminatory, nationalist laws, most notably the Nakba Law, the Family Unification Law, and, the Nation-State Law.


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