Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel / Flash 90
Shas Chairman Aryeh Deri, July 26, 2022.

A word to the wise for new immigrants to Israel: make sure you hang on to that passport from your country of origin.

Newly installed Interior Minister Aryeh Deri has instructed the Population Authority to prepare a new policy requiring new immigrants to prove they are remaining in the country before they can receive an Israeli passport.


As of 2017, anyone who becomes a citizen automatically becomes eligible for an Israeli passport. In past years, however, immigrants were only eligible for a passport one year after their date of Aliyah.

“The ‘air train’ in which people eligible [for citizenship] under the Law of Return are taking advantage of their right to a passport and ‘absorption package’ [of government benefits], and then going back to where they came from is unacceptable,” Deri said in a statement on Tuesday.

But new immigrant benefits – such as tax discounts, housing subsidies and other stipends – are already automatically frozen if a new citizen leaves the country.

“We should give status and a passport only to those who are settling in Israel, not to those looking to get benefits they’re not entitled to.”


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.