Legislation gives refugee status to Jews who fled Arab lands

In future peace negotiations, Palestinian refugees will not be the only ones to demand compensation.

By REBECCA ANNA STOIL
February 23, 2010 10:15
1 minute read.
This Nov. 15, 2009 photo shows an employee of the

iraq jewish archive 311 ap. (photo credit: AP)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

In future peace negotiations Palestinian refugees will not be the only ones to demand compensation after a law passed late Monday in the Knesset, mandating that the rights of Jews who fled Arab lands also be taken into consideration. The legislation, which sponsor MK Nissim Ze’ev (Shas) said would create “historical justice,” passed its final reading by a wide margin of 34-1.

Ze’ev said that the law “created historical justice” for the Jewish refugees who arrived in Israel before and after the establishment of the state due to persecution, humiliation, murder and kidnapping of Jews in several Muslim countries.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


In addition to allowing Jews to press claims against Arab countries for property that they were forced to leave behind, Ze’ev argued that parallel refugee status would enable negotiators to retroactively determine that Palestinian and Jewish refugees were part of a “population exchange,” thus negating the basis for Palestinian claims to a right of return.

“When historical justice comes to practical expression through this issue being raised by the Israeli government, the Quartet and the entire world will be able to do justice to both sides by revealing the true narrative of Jewish refugees in the Middle East,” said Ze’ev after the law was passed.

Other Knesset members were not happy with the new legislation.


“The only refugee problem in the Middle East is that of the Palestinian refugees who were expelled by the Jews, who expelled and then demanded compensation,” complained MK Taleb a-Sana (UAL). “The Jews were persecuted by Germany and Spain, and the people who are responsible for the destruction of the Second Temple and the Diaspora itself were the Romans, the ancestors of Berlusconi, who was embraced in the Knesset a few weeks ago.”

A-Sana added that the Zionist movement is responsible for the tragedy that befell the Jews who left North Africa, and still carries out “character assassination and attacks their culture and identity.”



“The goal of the law is to create a fictitious issue of Jewish refugees as a counterbalance to the Palestinian refugees.”

He added, however, that he supports the right of return, both of Palestinians to Israel and of Jews to Arab lands.

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town

By SHARON UDASIN