Legislation allowing the interior minister to revoke the permanent resident status of convicted terrorists is set for a final vote, after approval from the Knesset Interior Committee on Monday.
The bill proposed by Likud MK Amir Ohana states that such action may be taken against any permanent resident who received the status by lying on the application; residents of east Jerusalem who committed an act of breach of trust against the state; or a non-citizen immigrant living in Israel for under 10 years who poses a danger to public order. The interior minister can give the person a visa – that does not include social benefits – to live in the state.
The interior minister will have to consult with the justice minister before making the decision, and the resident can appeal the decision before the district court.
“There’s a very broad consensus for revoking permanent residence from Hamas members,” Ohana said. “It’s necessary.”
Herzl and Merav Hajaj, whose daughter Shir was killed in a terrorist attack last year, attended the meeting and supported the bill.
Merav Hajaj said to the committee that potential terrorists “should know that the harm to their families will be so great, that it will deter them... We aren’t fighting for Shir, because we already lost her. We are fighting to prevent another family from becoming bereaved.”
The Justice Ministry pushed for the bill to require the attorney-general’s approval before revoking residency. The ministry’s representative Omer Ben-Zvi said it will not be able to defend the bill before the Supreme Court if such approval is not required.
Interior Committee chairman Yoav Kisch said, “the bill requires consultation with an advisory committee, according to the Citizenship Law, and approval from the justice minister.
That is enough of a guarantee that this will be given reasonable consideration.
“The attorney-general’s job is to advise; I won’t let him be the one who decides,” Kisch added.