Israel to stop issuing birth certificates to foreign born babies

BY newsdesk  November 20, 2013 at 4:55 PM EST

Photo by Flickr User Jafi Israel

The Israeli government will stop giving birth certificates to babies born to foreigners to prevent the usage of the documentations to claim the right to stay in the country, the Guardian reports. Babies born to foreigners will instead be issued a handwritten hospital birth notice, which will not be considered an official government document.

This new law could affect migrants, diplomats, asylum seekers and international workers later in life when needed to apply for passports or even marriage licenses. Israel said it has no legal obligation to provide birth certificates to foreigners.
Rights groups Association of Civil Rights in Israel, the Hotline for Migrant Workers and Physicians for Human Rights look to challenge the move in court Sunday on behalf of a family from the Democratic Republic of Congo denied a birth certificate. The parents, who have work permits according to The Guardian, were also denied the ability to transfer the father’s last name to their daughter.

The state said in a brief that listing the father’s name would grant legal recognition of paternity without proof, inviting serious legal ramifications.
“Determining paternity is liable to determine the status of father and child in civil law on matters such as inheritance, child support, custody, conversion, names, citizenship, residency, registration in the Population Registry and more,” the brief explained.

Oded Feller, a lawyer with ACRI, told the Guardian: “The state has an obligation to protect the identities of all the children in Israel equally. It is also obligated to grant all children, without discrimination, birth certificates. The interior ministry is not authorized to erase elements of a child’s identity. It is not entitled to cancel the parenthood of fathers who are not Israeli, nor is it authorised to take away the names given to children by their parents.”

H/T Cindy Huang