Israeli daily, Haaretz, published a report revealing that Israel revoked the residency rights of around 240.000 Palestinians since it occupied the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, in 1967, until the Palestinian Authority was established in 1994.It stated that more than 140.000 Palestinian residents of the West Bank and more than 100.000 residents of the Gaza Strip lost their residency rights in the period between the 1967 six-day war, until the Palestinian Authority was established in 1994.
The report also indicated that the natural growth of the Palestinian population is around %3.3, but the strict Israeli measures on border terminals, reduced the Palestinian population by more than %10, most of them were college students who studied abroad, or freelancers who travelled to several countries, including the Arab gulf.
Haaretz said that the Israeli government coordinator in the West Bank had to reveal these statistics after the Center for the Defense of the Individual filed a request in this regard under the Freedom of Information act.
The coordinator said that Israel denied entry, and revoked residency rights, of dozens of thousands of Palestinians who left the Gaza Strip for seven years, or more.
Israel also claimed that around 54.730 Palestinians did not participate in the 1981 census, while around 7.249 Palestinians did not participate in the census of 1988.
Haaretz reported that it revealed a “secret measure” practiced by Israel to prevent the return of Palestinians who travel for extended periods by stripping their residency rights especially when taking into consideration that, before the creation of the Palestinian Authority, Palestinians who travel abroad had to surrender their ID cards at Israeli border terminals, and were given travel documents valid for three years.
At the end of the three years, the Palestinians were forced to renew their travel documents for one more year, and those who remain abroad for a minimum of six months after the expiration of their documents were regarded as residents who “abandoned their residency rights”.
The Arabs48 news website reported that the same measures are still in effect for Palestinian residents of occupied Jerusalem; those who lose their residency rights are not allow back into their hometown, are not allowed to live there, and are denied the right to visit with their families in occupied East Jerusalem.
The measure led to the expulsion of dozens of thousands of Jerusalemite Palestinians who left the city for seven or more years.
The Israeli measures are direct violations of International Law, all human rights regulations, and do not apply to Jewish-Israelis who leave Jerusalem, and the rest of the country, for many years, including those who lived all of their lives, among other places, in the US or Europe, but never faced the threat of losing their residency rights.
These statistics do not include the millions of Palestinian refugees who were forced into exile during the establishment of Israel in the historic land of Palestine in 1948. Those refugees are denied their internationally guaranteed Right Of Return.