October 10, 2010
Posted: 1327 GMT
Israeli cabinet ministers on Sunday approved by a majority vote a controversial proposal which would require every non-Jew wishing to become a citizen of Israel to vow loyalty to "the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state."
The law has been the subject of much controversy, especially among Israel's Arab minority.
Arab Knesset member Ahmed Tibi from the Ra'am-Ta'al party criticized the proposed move last week, saying that "the values of Jewish and Democratic cannot be in the same definition because democracy is the equality of all the citizens. But an ethnic definition as Jewish is the preference of the Jew over that of the Arab and therefore it fixates an inferior status to 20 percent of the population."
In describing the reasons for the timing of the proposed change of language, Mark Regev, a spokesman for Netanyahu, said last week, "What we are asking others to accept we have to demand of ourselves" - a reference to the recent Israeli government demand that Palestinians recognize Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people.
Israel is home to roughly 6 million Jewish citizens and 1.5 million Arab citizens.
Read the full article in the Israeli daily Haaretz.
Posted by: IME Producer
This blog has now been archived and commenting has been switched off. Visit the Inside the Middle East site for news, views and video from across the region.
Read more about CNN's special reports policy