The Arab American Institute (AAI) has joined our call to demand a fair investigation for Kheir Hamdan and to agitate our leaders to bring about an end to police violence worldwide. AAI was founded in 1995 and is a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC and is committed to the civic and political empowerment of Americans of Arab descent.
On Sunday November 23rd the Israeli cabinet approved an anti-democratic bill that would solidify the Jewish nature of the state and strip any real meaning from citizenship of non-Jews in Israel, relegating Israel's Arab citizens to a second-class status. It also aims to remove Arabic as an official language in Israel. The bill in its current state is unlikely to pass in the Knesset but is the precursor to a version to be put forward by Prime Minister Netanyahu in the coming week.
On Thursday November 20th the Mayor of Ashkelon Itamar Shimoni decided to suspend the employment of Arab workers in all kindergartens untilfurther notice.He called to ban all Arab construction workers from kindergartens in the city while children are present in the school. This move has drawn criticism from organizations and politicians from both coalition and opposition parties.
The Mossawa Center's staff will take part and speak in two emergency conferences in the Knesset this week. Mossawa also calls on all citizens of Israel as well as the international community to write to Security Minister Tzipi Livni and President Reuven Rivlin and urge them to call for a full investigation into the shooting of Kheir al-Din al-Hamdan and to put an end to racist legislation aimed at further marginalizing Arab citizens in Israel.
In response to the demonstrations police have been using tactics of intimidation to deter youth from participating. Their tactics have included entering schools and threatening teachers and students with detention if they are in any way involved with the protests.