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Following HaMoked’s petition to the HCJ: the military canceled a Gaza deportation order issued for a Palestinian youth living in the West Bank from infancy

The youth, born in the Gaza Strip and living in the West Bank for the past 21 years or so, having moved there with his family as a baby, was incarcerated by the military in September 2016 and was to be released in May 2017. However, shortly before his release date, he was told by the state authorities that he was to be deport him to Gaza, based on his registered address listed in military records as being Gaza. This, due to Israel’s policy not to update address changes in its copy of the Palestinian population registry, and despite its 2012 undertaking before the High Court of Justice (HCJ) not to deport to Gaza people who had moved from there to the West Bank before September 2005, and for the first time since this undertaking was made. Despite HaMoked’s letters to the military on the youth’s behalf, sent with ample proof that his center of life was in the West Bank, the military clung to its intent to deport him to Gaza.

Once a deportation order was issued against the youth under the Order Regarding Security Provisions [Consolidated Version] (Judea and Samaria) (No. 1651) 5770-2009, the case was transferred for review by a designated committee, tasked with reviewing such deportation orders – the legal basis for issuing which is the claim that the targeted person is an “infiltrator” living “illegally” in the West Bank. Despite this clear legal framework, in its arguments before the committee, the state raised an irrelevant security claim for the youth’s planned deportation.

On October 15, 2017, the committee accepted the military commander’s arguments and upheld the deportation order, ruling that although the youth had entered the West Bank as a minor and had been living there his entire life, now that he was an adult, it was possible to define him as an “infiltrator”, and that he should be deported to Gaza based on the security material against him.

Therefore, on November 8, 2017, HaMoked petitioned the HCJ to prevent the deportation. In its petition, HaMoked asserted as before that the youth cannot be considered an “infiltrator”, as permits of stay in the West Bank existed only from 2007, whereas the youth had moved to the West Bank many years before. As to the security claim raised by the state, HaMoked asserted that the decision in question did not concern “deportation on security grounds” but “deportation of an infiltrator”, and it should be scrutinized as such.

On December 19, 2017, and before the court heard the petition, the state notified HaMoked of the military’s decision to cancel the deportation order. The youth was released to his home that same day and was reunited with his family. (02) 627 1698   (02) 627 6317

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