The Meretz party petitioned the High Court of Justice Tuesday against the Jewish Nation-State Law, saying that it is discriminatory.
Meretz became the second group to petition against the controversial law enacted July 19 following a petition that was filed last week by Druze Knesset members and leaders, with the support of Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon. The court set a January hearing for that case.
Meretz’s petition said that the new law contradicts the principle of equality, and therefore should not be legal.
“There is no precedent in the world for mandating discrimination based on race, religion or gender,” the petitions says.
The petition also asked the court to nullify a clause that downgrades Arabic from an official language of the state to merely a “special language.”
“The prime minister decided to shamelessly rank the citizens of the state – with Jews as class A, Druze as class B, and Arabs, gays and lesbians at the bottom of the totem pole – with racism that was approved by the Knesset as a Basic Law,” Meretz leader Tamar Zandberg said.
Meanwhile, retired Supreme Court Judge Salim Jubran slammed the law in an Israel Radio interview. Jubran said he is proud that his first language is Arabic, and is upset that it is no longer an official language of Israel.
“The Nation-State Law makes no mention of equality, even in one word,” Jubran complained. “This bill is not good. It is a bad law that is unnecessary. It does not add honor to Israel’s book of laws, and therefore, I believe its fate is that it will be canceled, and I hope that happens as soon as possible.”
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