Barak. Denies working on draft
Photo: Dudu Azulay

Barak backs loyalty pledge, with change

Labor chair wants 'In spirit of Declaration of Independence' added to new pledge of allegiance

Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Thursday he would support the new amendment to the Citizenship Act – which mandates that all aspiring citizens would be required to pledge their allegiance to a "Jewish, democratic" Israel – on condition that it be altered slightly.


Barak, who claims not to have been involved in the drafting of the amendment, proposed that the words: "In the spirit of the Declaration of Independence" be added after the words: "Jewish, democratic Israel".


Barak asked that his proposal be brought before the Cabinet in its meeting Sunday, during which the vote on the amendment is scheduled to take place.


His office said the defense minister believes the added words reflect the liberal and open nature of the declaration, as well as the values of the State of Israel.


"Similar declarations are used in many of the most advanced nations in the world," he said.


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was asked about the amendment Thursday during a tour of Lod, and explained, "The essence of the state is that it is the nation state of the Jewish people – a Jewish democratic state. Every Jew in the world can come here and make his home."


However, Netanyahu added, non-Jews also deserve equal rights. "For this reason it is a democratic state according to the Declaration of Independence," he said. "These are things we expect from others as well as ourselves, and anything else just isn't natural."


Aviel Magnezi contributed to this report



פרסום ראשון: 10.07.10, 16:06
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