Israel Railways fires Arab workers

State-owned company denies discrimination, says security criteria allows work for military veterans only.

israel train 88 248 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
israel train 88 248
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
State-owned Israel Railways said Monday it had fired around 40 Israeli Arabs after deciding only military veterans could do its jobs. The railways said its security department changed the criteria, adding, however, that it is interested in providing veterans work in the tight economy. The workers had acted as lookouts at crossings to prevent trains and vehicles from colliding. The railway denied that it was discriminating against its workers. It says the new job criteria would also apply to Israeli Jews who were disqualified from the military or chose not to serve for religious reasons. Most Israeli Arabs are not required to serve in the military.