Photo: Ariel Hermoni, Defense Ministry
'Won't hurt Arabs.' Barak
Photo: Ariel Hermoni, Defense Ministry

Loyalty oath bill: Barak gives ministers voting freedom

Defense minister expected to back amendment to Citizenship Act, but says other Labor cabinet members allowed to vote with their conscience

Defense Minister Ehud Barak announced Saturday evening he intends to allow Labor ministers freedom of voting during Sunday's vote on the amendment to the Citizenship Act.


Barak said the issue is a conscientious one, therefore he will allow his ministers to vote with their conscience.


The Labor chief is expected to vote in favor of the bill, but the other ministers from his party are expected to vote against it.


"The phrasing I suggested, including the addition of words in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence, best reflects the fundamental values of the State of Israel. Such a declaration will not harm the Arab minority, and declarations of a similar nature are customary in civilized countries around the world," Barak said during a meeting with Labor ministers.


Cabinet will be asked to approve a proposed amendment to the Citizenship Act which would obligate naturalized citizens to pledge their allegiance to Israel as a "Jewish and democratic state."


Barak suggested that the amendment to the law read: "I hereby declare my loyalty to the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence and I pledge to honor state laws."


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday, "Israel is the Jewish people's homeland. It is so in its essence, in its government, its symbols, holidays and language, and that should be reflected by its Citizenship Act."



פרסום ראשון: 10.09.10, 22:18
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