Address by Suhad Bishara at MEMO’s ‘Present Absentees: Palestinian Citizens of Israel & the Nation-State Law’ conference held in London on April 27, 2019.
Suhad Bishara is a senior lawyer with The Legal Centre for Arab Minority Rights -Adalah, specialising in land and planning rights. She has worked with Adalah since 2001. Bishara previously served as a legal consultant to the Association of Forty, the Arab Steering Committee for Urban Planning in the Galilee Society, and the Hotline for Battered Women. Bishara was the first Palestine & Law Fellow at Columbia University Law School (2014-2015).
PANEL: The travesty of Palestinians in Israel
Since Israel passed the Absentee Property Law in 1950, the term “present absentees” has beenused to describe the reality facing Palestinian citizens of Israel. Physically present but legally absent,Palestinian citizens of Israel have routinely been denied access to their ancestral villages, deprived ofthe right to family reunification and, in the case of Palestinian Bedouins in the Negev, forcibly removedfrom their homes on the grounds that their villages are “unrecognised”.