Blocked from working towards a better Palestinian future

Gisha, Israel’s major human rights group that documents freedom of movement, highlights a shocking decision by Israel’s High Court (background to the case here):

Israel’s High Court of Justice today decided not to allow Berlanty Azzam, a 22-year-old student who was forcibly removed to the Gaza Strip six weeks ago, to return to Bethlehem University to complete the final two months of her BA in Business Administration.

In doing so, the High Court upheld the State’s and the army’s position, despite the fact that they repeatedly failed to provide any real evidence for their claims regarding Berlanty’s status in the West Bank.The State insisted that Berlanty be denied permission to complete her studies, even though she was supposed to finish her degree at the end of the month and despite the fact that there are no security allegations against her.

The State’s only claim against Berlanty, an allegation that was not supported by any evidence, is that she was present in the West Bank “illegally”. However, Berlanty herself clarified in her military hearing that she traveled from the Gaza Strip to the West Bank in full compliance with the law – using an entry permit to Israel issued to her by the army after she passed a rigorous security investigation.

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