Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Report condemns Israel's refugee policy (updated)

  Women on a balcony in the Jewish quarter of Damascus (A picture-a-day)

With thanks: Sylvia and all those who alerted me to the report

Israel's State Comptroller has issued a scathing 30-page report condemning the Israeli government for not doing enough to protect the rights of immigrants from Arab countries and Iran. Judge Joseph Shapira blasts the government's decision-making as 'limited' and says that not enough resources were devoted to collecting information and establishing a database.

Update: the Jerusalem Post reports:

State Comptroller Joseph Shapira on Wednesday slammed the state’s Ministry for Pensioners' Affairs for failing to properly collect data regarding Jewish refugees and their rights expelled from Arab countries and Iran after Israel’s founding.

Of the estimated hundreds of thousands expelled, information has been collected for only 130 new claims for compensatory relief and prior information on 14,000 claims from the Justice Ministry has not been integrated.

In 2009, the Ministry for Pensioners' Affairs was assigned the role of developing a database relating to the issue, which has come up from time to time in peace negotiations between Israel and its neighbors on resolving the Israeli-Arab conflict.

From 2003-2007, the state made a series of decisions toward gathering information about the Jewish refugees in order to potentially obtain compensatory relief for their losses.



The Knesset State Control Committee asked the Comptroller’s office to investigate the status of the database in July 2012.

The Comptroller investigated the development of the database during the period of August 2012-May 2013 and found “severe” deficiencies regarding the “research, compiling, recording and gathering of information with regard to the rights of the Jewish refugees from Arab countries and Iran.”

Shapira said that despite repeated declarations of the importance of the issue (both internally and in peace negotiations), that the state authority assigned to work on the issue has taken very little action and there has been little oversight.


Read report in full (Hebrew)

Haaretz reports:

"The report shows that even if peace were to break out tomorrow morning, Israel would be hard-pressed to present a solid claim because the state does not know what property is at issue. The possible reasons for this are many and absurd: Over the years, immigrants from Iran and Arab states were instructed to fill in and submit forms aimed at enabling the coordination of both individual and communal claims. Between 1969-2009, the Justice Ministry collected around 14,000 of these, but they were never processed or entered into a computer database. Some of the records are still in the ministry’s archive, waiting to be scanned digitally, but some have deteriorated so badly as to be worthless. The retirement of a single clerk who was in charge of the material at one point but did not train her successor is thought to have led to the disappearance of still more documents connected to the issue. "

Read article in full 

Abject failure on Jewish refugees from Arab lands (Jewish Chronicle)

 

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

These quarrels were bound to happen!
My family went to Israel but no help came from the government.Even in the refugee camps, they had to work very hard to be able to buy food!
The situation was very bad for Egyptian jews.
Sultana

Sylvia said...

Practically every student in Israeli schools - no matter their national/ethnic origin- must travel to Poland at least once.
They go to Poland with their schools. they go to Poland with their jobs, they go to Poland with their clubs, they go to Poland with their political colleagues.

A lot of money goes then not only to Poland but mostly to Shoah studies in addition to what is already allocated.

Why do Sephardim not go to Spain learn about the Inquisition or to the Arab countries that admit Israeli tourists instead?

I realize that what I am saying is provocative but enough is enough.
Boycott the trips to Poland.

Anonymous said...

yES
Ii DO AGREE WITH YOU; bUT THEN WE SHOULD ALSO BOYCOTT ANY COUNTRY THAT HELPED gERMANY DURUNG THE WAR; eVEN frANCE THAT IS SO LOVEY DOVEY WITH THE aRABS SHOULD BE EXCLUDED.

dOES ANYBODY IN THE WORLD LOVE US?

SULTANA