Activists rally in Tel Aviv against loyalty oath

Artists, intellectuals, MKs express fears that Israel becoming fascist country at protest in front of old Tel Aviv Museum.

October 10, 2010 19:22
1 minute read.
Rally against loyalty oath

Tel Aviv rally against loyalty oath 311. (photo credit: Benjamin Spier)

A rally took place in Tel Aviv protesting the cabinet's passage of changes in the country's Citizenship Law requiring new citizens to take a loyalty oath to Israel "as a Jewish and democratic state," on Sunday.

The rally, which took place on Rothschild Blvd. in front of the old Tel Aviv Museum, drew dozens who were angered by what was described by Professor Yaron Ezrahi, as a deterioration "from the vision of a democratic country to that of a fascist country."

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Among those attending the rally were artists, intellectuals, MK Dov Henin, MK Nitzan Horowitz, MK Daniel Ben-Simon, and MK Eitan Cabel.

Speaking at the rally, sculptor Danny Caravan said that he is, "embarrassed by those who represent me in the government," and by the decisions that they took today.

MKs react to changes in the citizenship law

Elsewhere, MKs from both sides of the political spectrum responded on Sunday to the cabinet's approval of changes to the Citizenship Law requiring a loyalty oath of new citizens.

MK Ahmed Tibi accused the government of having "turned into the stooge of Israel Beiteinu and its fascist doctrine."

"There is no country in the world that forces its citizens or those naturalizing to swear their loyalty to ideology or a sectarian obligation," the UAL-Ta'al MK continued. "Israel is proving that it is not egalitarian and is in fact democratic for Jews and Jewish for Arabs."

Opposition Head Tzipi Livni (Kadima) said that the idea of a loyalty oath "is politics at its worst."

"The delicate and important topic of a Jewish and democratic state has turned into commercialized politics, and it is totally unnecessary," Livni said. "The central thing we need to protect is Israel's existence as Jewish and equal for all of its citizens."

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