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Israeli MPs slam new regime restrictions on Arab workers

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Arab Israelis, some holding Palestinian flags, take part in a large demonstration during a general strike organized to support the Palestinians who call for a “day of rage” in the northern town of Sakhnin, October 13, 2015. (Photo by AFP)

Two members of the Israeli parliament (Knesset) have criticized the Tel Aviv regime for imposing new restrictions on Arab workers in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The municipalities in Tel Aviv and some other cities in the occupied territories have decided to bar cleaning and maintenance workers – including Jews and Arabs – from schools when students are present.

According to Israeli Army Radio, the majority of such workers are Arab Israelis. Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the city of Rehovot told Reuters that the measure would likely disproportionately affect Arab workers.

On Sunday, Knesset member Issawi Freij denounced the move as “a source of racism and discrimination.”

Another Knesset member, Dov Khenin, described the restrictions as “dangerous measures of racist exclusion.”

The new restrictions come amid simmering tensions between Israeli forces and Palestinian protesters, which has seen dozens of Palestinians accused of attempting to stab Israelis killed.

Palestinian university students react as tear gas canisters are fired by Israeli security forces during clashes following a protest against Israel near the settlement of Beit Hagai, at the southern entrance to the occupied West Bank city of Hebron, October 18, 2015. (Photo by AFP)

 

Since the current violence erupted on October 1, Israeli troops and armed settlers have killed some 45 Palestinians while eight Israelis have also been killed.

The tensions were triggered by Tel Aviv’s imposition on August 26 of sweeping restrictions on entries into the compound of the al-Aqsa Mosque in East al-Quds (Jerusalem) and Israeli settlers’ repeated stormings of the mosque.


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