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Obtaining legal status for a stateless youth who is a native inhabitant of Israel: the case of 'AM
documents: 0  |  Updates: 2 According to Israeli records, until the age of 23, 'AM did not exist, this, despite the fact he has lived his entire life in Israel with his mother and siblings who are official Israeli residents. From his birth, his mother attempted to formalize his status, but this did not transpire due to the mother's personal difficulties coupled with outrageous bureaucratic implacability. Therefore, 'AM remained stateless, bereft of any legal status. He lived as a persecuted man, exposed to detentions, arrests for unlawful presence and even deportation; without rights ownership, work or education. He was deprived of all social security rights, including the right to health, as well as the right to marry and to found a family. He was a man without any human rights and liberties.

'AM was probably born in Jerusalem, but his birth documents were lost, and without them the Ministry of Interior refused to grant him status. The mother's mental condition makes it difficult to ascertain the circumstances of 'AM's birth, but he has many documents which she had collected along the years, attesting that he was her child, living with her in Jerusalem. As can be expected, the harsh circumstances of his life propelled him to commit offences. At his last trial, in 2000, the judge wrote in the verdict that "the possibility cannot be ruled out that the transgressions were partly a manner of crying for help and seeking attention".

A year later, his prison term complete, HaMoked applied on his behalf to the East Jerusalem population administration bureau to have his status formalized. Seven months later, HaMoked's reminder in the matter was returned, with the handwritten notice that "a family unification application number is missing, and under the stated identity card number, no application number was traced […]" – clearly absurd as a response to an application concerning the lack of both status and an identity number.

According to the replies of the interior ministry both to HaMoked and to several Knesset Members who intervened, in the two years which passed from the filing of the application, the officials at the ministry "studied the case in depth", "processed the data", and also "reconsidered it". They were still immersed in the file in 2005 and so caused a delay in the issuance of the declarative ruling that 'AM was the biological son of his mother, which they themselves had required. In August 2005, with no solution forthcoming, HaMoked appealed to the Court for Administrative Affairs to formalize 'AM's status in Israel. The proceedings in the petition were not yet complete, when the inter-ministerial committee on humanitarian affairs convened to review 'AM's matter. The committee determined that the blood tie between mother and son had been established in the tissue analysis performed at the ministry's behest in 2002, and therefore ruled that 'AM would receive temporary residency for a year. In January 2007, 'AM's application for permanent residency in Israel was granted.

Following HaMoked's petition a stateless Palestinian youth gains status: the petitioner has lived his entire life in Jerusalem, but systematic stalling by the Interior Ministry, left him without basic liberties and rights. He was now granted temporary residency for a year, and notified that his future application for permanent residency in Israel would be considered in accordance with the law
Interim Order preventing the deportation of a young stateless Palestinian: the HCJ ordered the State not to deport the young man until the hearing on HaMoked's petition, which demands that he be granted status in Israel. The petitioner has lived in Jerusalem his entire life, but the Interior Ministry's systematic foot dragging in handling his case has turned him into a person without basic righ... (02) 627 1698   (02) 627 6317

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