Attorneys to petition High Court against Shaked's refugee policy

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked announced a policy in which entry to non-Jewish Ukrainian refugees would be limited to 5,000.

  Ukrainian Ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk in Tel Aviv, March 11, 2022.  (photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/MAARIV)
Ukrainian Ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk in Tel Aviv, March 11, 2022.
(photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/MAARIV)

Ukrainian Ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk announced that he would petition the Israeli government, and especially Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked, in the High Court of Justice for its policy regarding Ukrainian refugees, N12 reported on Saturday evening.

"The Interior Ministry's new policy violates agreements between Ukraine and Israel regarding visa waivers for Ukrainian citizens," Korniychuk wrote in a statement reported by N12.

"In light of all the diplomatic options being exhausted, the embassy has no choice but to ask the Varsha law firm to submit a petition to the High Court against the new policy in order to protect the rights of Ukrainian refugees."

"This evening, I submitted a petition against Ayelet Shaked's decision to prevent the entry of Ukrainian refugees starting tonight as well as a request for a warrant that would prohibit the validity of such a decision," the lawyer Tomer Varsha told N12. 

"We found that this is not only about a violation of an international agreement but also that Shaked was not authorized to make such a decision - it should have been a government decision or at least, made after consultation with the Knesset's interior committee. We are sure that the High Court will sort this out."

The Ukrainian embassy in Israel later put out a statement on Facebook denying that the petition was submitted by it but stating that it wholeheartedly agrees with the contents of it and trusts the court to come to the right decision.

Earlier in the week, Shaked announced a new policy in which the number of non-Jewish refugees allowed entry into Israel would be limited to 5,000.

 Ayelet Shaked addressing questions on the Ukrainian refugees in Israel, March 8, 2022 (credit: ELAD ZAGMAN) Ayelet Shaked addressing questions on the Ukrainian refugees in Israel, March 8, 2022 (credit: ELAD ZAGMAN)

On Saturday evening, dozens of protesters gathered outside of Shaked's house in Tel Aviv to object to the policy. The protestors waved signs with slogans such as "a jew does not turn away a refugee".