Demonstrators attend a rally to protest against “the nation-state of the Jewish people” bill in Tel Aviv
22 July, 2018, 05:35
The bill designates the state of Israel as the national home of the Jewish people, Jerusalem as its capital and Hebrew as its official language.
The Jewish Nation-State Law also specifies that the right to realize national self-determination in the State of Israel - the right to decide upon self-governance and what it looks like - is uniquely held by the Jewish people.
Israeli Arabs reportedly comprise about 20 per cent of Israel's nine million-strong population.
Lipman also takes issue with the clause in the law that allows groups in Israel to create and maintain neighborhoods and communities based on identity. A number of Arab lawmakers ripped up copies of the bill as the law was passed, and they were removed from the chamber as a result.
The controversial law, he added, "means there will no longer be anything preventing the Israeli government from officially supporting the settlements", which are being illegally built on Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank. The nationalities listed include ethnicities without their own states, states without distinct or exclusive nationalities/ethnicities, and long-defunct "minority rule" colonial constructs.
It was the first time a piece of proposed legislation has been disqualified before being discussed in the plenum in two Knesset terms, with some critics branding the bill "racist".
The ambassador said he planned to lodge a protest with a UN committee that oversees relations with the United States, the host-country of the United Nations.
What is sadly lacking at this juncture is unity among the Arab and Islamic countries, which is being exploited by the state of Israel to continue its persecution of Palestinians without let or hindrance.
Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, called the law a bid to advance "ethnic superiority by promoting racist policies".
"It has passed a law of Jewish supremacy and told us that we will always be second-class citizens".
He warned against the catastrophic repercussions of the new law, which lays the foundation for further racist policies, violates basic principles of the global laws, human rights and endangers worldwide peace and security. Hundreds of thousands of others were displaced or fled. Those who remained have full equal rights under the law but say they face constant discrimination, citing inferior services and unfair allocations for education, health and housing.
"Israel's nation-state bill is similar to provisions in many Western democratic constitutions, which provide for an official language and national character that reflects the majority of the population".
American Jewish organizations also expressed their disapproval of the law.