Today, the so-called “Nation-State Bill” passed its first reading in Israel’s Knesset. Among other things, the bill would remove Arabic as an official language in Israel. Daniel Sokatch, CEO of the New Israel Fund, released the following statement:
“This is tribalism at its worst. Why pass a law that serves primarily as a slap in the face to Arab Palestinian citizens of Israel? What will removing Arabic as a national language do, except formalize discrimination and define first- and second-class citizens? How can the ultra-nationalist government justify a law that so blatantly violates the Jewish value of human dignity and the principle of the equality of all people enshrined in Israel’s Declaration of Independence?
“Israeli democracy is being systematically dismantled by its own government. The “Nation-State Bill” is just the latest in a barrage of anti-democratic bills and laws put forward by the Netanyahu government. Like its predecessors, this bill will only serve to endanger Israel’s future.”
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