Middle East

Israel court recognizes Arab residents' ties to Jerusalem

Israel's high court has recognized the special ties of Jerusalem-born Palestinians to their city — a precedent-setting ruling that could help protect their residency rights.

Since capturing traditionally Arab east Jerusalem in 1967, Israel has stripped 14,500 Palestinians of their residency rights. Reasons included prolonged absence from Jerusalem, even in cases where Palestinians moved to the outskirts because of housing shortages in the city or went abroad to study.

This week, three Supreme Court judges ordered the state to restore the residency of a Jerusalem native who spent years in the United States but returned to the city. The judges referred to Palestinians from Jerusalem as "native-born residents."

Lawyer Adi Lustigman said Wednesday that it's the first time the court recognizes the special ties of Palestinians to their native city.