Talk:Right of return

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United Kingdom[edit]

I find this article to be confusing in regards to the current requirements for Right of Return to the UK. Perhaps someone with knowledge in this area can edit the article. (talk) 05:51, 1 September 2009 (UTC)


The following is posted:

Significantly, the UN maintains a separate and distinct definition of the word "refugees" for Palestinians who left Palestine (including present-day Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza) in 1948 and/or 1967. Palestinian refugees from Palestine are classed as both the individuals who left their homes and any descendants of those individuals. This stands in contrast to the UN definition of refugee as it applies to displaced persons connected with territories other than those of the State of Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza: in the latter case it refers only to those individuals who were forced to flee, not to their lineal descendants.[13]

This is misleading and it does not reflect the complexity of the Palestine refugee situation or definitions and can be misleading as to the numbers who have RoR to the Internationally recognized Israeli territories.

For the purposes of the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, a refugee is defined This reflects the UNHCR Statute.

The UNHCR Statute and the 1951 Convention also state:

"D. This Convention shall not apply to persons who are at present receiving from organs or agencies of the United Nations other than the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees protection or assistance."

However, UNRWA's 'working definition' of Palestine Refugees is only in order to qualify for UNRWA support until a final settlement. However, UNRWA support, by it's name and mandate, is "to carry out direct Relief and Works programmes for Palestine refugees". Unlike the UNHCR, UNRWA does not facilitate RoR .

Unlike the UNHCR Statute, the 1951 Convention states in D: 2nd Paragraph

"When such protection or assistance has ceased for any reason, without the position of such persons being definitively settled in accordance with the relevant resolutions adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations, these persons shall ipso facto be entitled to the benefits of this Convention."

If Palestine Refugees are, arguable, 'ipso facto' entitled to the UNHCR benefits because the UNRWA mandate does not cover their right of return, they will also be, 'ipso facto', bound by it's definition, which does NOT include 'descendants of those individuals'.

There has been no response ....I am changing the text to reflect the complexity and true nature of the UN/UNHCR and UNRWA definitions and the ambiguity resulting from "7. Provided that the competence of the High Commissioner as defined in paragraph 6 above shall not extend to a person:(c) Who continues to receive from other organs or agencies of the United Nations protection or assistance;"

Refugees from the former Palestine Mandate have an ambiguous position. UNRWA's 'working definition', is only to ascertain who qualifies for UNRWA support while final borders are in dispute. Although it includes lineal descendants, UNRWA's mandate only extends to carrying out "direct relief and works programmes" for Palestine refugees. It neither defines refugees or facilitates RoR. and

The Statute of the UNHCR defines a refugee in respect to RoR

"6. A. (i) Any person who has been considered a refugee under the Arrangements of 12 May 1926 and of 30 June 1928 or under the Conventions of 28 October 1933 and 10 February 1938, the Protocol of 14 September 1939 or the Constitution of the International Refugee Organization. (ii) Any person who, as a result of events occurring before 1 January 1951 and owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear or for reasons other than personal convenience, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country; or who, not having a nationality and being outside the country of his former habitual residence, is unable or, owing to such fear or for reasons other than personal convenience, is unwilling to return to it."

It goes on to say: "7. Provided that the competence of the High Commissioner as defined in paragraph 6 above shall not extend to a person: (c) Who continues to receive from other organs or agencies of the United Nations protection or assistance;

This is also reflected in the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugee. However, the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees also states: "When such protection or assistance has ceased for any reason, without the position of such persons being definitively settled in accordance with the relevant resolutions adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations, these persons shall ipso facto be entitled to the benefits of this Convention."

Because UNRWA's 'working definition' of Palestine Refugees is only in order to qualify for UNRWA support until a final settlement and, unlike the UNHCR, UNRWA does not facilitate RoR, it can be argued that their RoR falls 'ipso facto to the UNHCR, under which lineal descendants are not included.

nofavour (talk) 08:22, 5 September 2008 (UTC)

This section presents an interpretation of a controversial view as if it was widely accepted, and is also uncited. Not to mention the factual error that the letter of recognition by Israel did not recognize a Palestinian STATE:

"As with any International Legal Treaty or Resolution, such only take effect when acceded to and adopted by both Parties, however, the declaration (cited above) gives this the force of law when so adopted - trumping later suggestions given by the United Nations. This accession and adoption on behalf of both the Palestinian State (PLO/PLA Chairman Yasser Arafat) and the State of Israel (Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin) took place on the 9th of September 1993, with an exchange of Israel – Palestine Liberation Organization letters of recognition. Thus it is clear that the "Recognition" of Sovereignty by each Party to the Resolution took place on 9 September 1993, so the operative date for the determination of the place of residence is that date. Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion also claimed that given recent history, refugees could not be trusted to live in peace with their neighbors."


Drmikeh49 (talk) 04:47, 8 September 2011 (UTC)


Right now the following is posted:

The December 15, 1790 Law stated that : 'All persons born in a foreign country and descending in any degree of a French man or woman expatriated for religious reason are declared French nationals (naturels français) and will benefit to rights attached to that quality if they come back to France, establish their domicile there and take the civic oath.'.
Article 4 of the June 26, 1889 Nationality Law stated that : 'Descendants of families proscribed by the revocation of the Edict of Nantes (in 1685) will continue to benefit from the benefit of the December 15, 1790 Law, but on the condition that a nominal decree should be issued for every petitioner. That decree will only produce its effects for the future. '.

It doesn't seem relevant to me per the definition: "belief that members of an ethnic or national group have a right to immigration and naturalization into the country that they, the country, or both consider to be that group's homeland, without prior personal citizenship in that country." In particular, the matters being discussed long predate the current France.

I am therefore tentatively removing, unless someone can show that it is in some way relevant to the idea that ethnic French can claim citizenship in France.AnotherBDA 07:07, 28 March 2006 (UTC)


I do not believe that the Philippines section added by an anonymous-IP poster belongs here. It regards "Former natural-born Filipino citizens who have naturalized in another country, and subsequently lost their Filipino citizenship". But the right of return is not about persons who held citizenship and subsequently lost it -- it is about "a belief that members of an ethnic or national group have a right to immigration and naturalization into the country that they, the country, or both consider to be that group's homeland". I have edited the latter to clarify: now reads "a belief that members of an ethnic or national group have a right to immigration and naturalization into the country that they, the country, or both consider to be that group's homeland, without prior personal citizenship in that country."

I have therefore moved the Philippines into a discussion in the Background section re non-ROR laws that nonetheless resemble RORs. The parallels are interesting and say somethin about the circumstances in which RORs make sense. But it is not the same thing, I think. AnotherBDA 14:01, 20 December 2005 (UTC)

United States / Mexico[edit]

How about Mexicans whose ancestors where displaced by the expansion of the United States? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Hcobb (talkcontribs) 19:22, 1 September 2007 (UTC)

Re: United States / Mexico[edit]

Mexico lost the US-Mexican War, and by the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo lost all rights to that land. People who chose not to live in those lands lost by Mexico and that had their Mexican nationality have therefor no rights to that land (Territory is part of the State, alongside government and population). Descendants of Mexicans that decided to stay in the lost territory and subsequently adquired United States nationality could argue to adquire Mexican nationality, but not the other way around (they never left their country per se). Eriann 9:55, 28 September 2007 (CTS)

Two Chinas?[edit]

Does any major government on Earth claim that there are two nations of China?

There are two governments that have claims about being the sole legitimate government of a China, but neither says that there is another China out there somewhere outside their natural borders.

Hcobb (talk) 19:00, 9 September 2008 (UTC)


Merge with Law of Return request[edit]

Yodakii? You put the tag on here, but I don't see that you've voiced any reason for doing so. Before anyone can discuss it, they have to know what the issue is... Also, you negected to add the {{merge}} to the Law of Return article. Any particular reason?  :-p Tomer TALK 01:54, August 22, 2005 (UTC)

There is a discussion in the "Comparing the Jewish and Palestinian sections". I thought that was enough to add the tag. As for the Law of Return article, there is no discussion there about merging, only here. Should I bring it up in that article's discussion as well? Yodakii 03:53, 22 August 2005 (UTC)
I took care of it. If you want to know how, just check out the diffs at Law of Return. Tomer TALK 04:15, August 22, 2005 (UTC)
The Law of Return is a pretty big topic by itself. While there should certainly be a summary here, the topic I think is well wide enough to merit its own article.--Pharos 07:26, 4 September 2005 (UTC)
  • In fact, the opposite merge is due: the wikipedia policy is to split sub-articles from big ones. mikka (t) 23:49, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

Wrong heading[edit]

As described in the definintion here:

"The term Right of return reflects a belief that members of an ethnic or national group have a right to immigration and naturalization into the nation they consider their homeland. This belief is sometimes reflected in special consideration in a nation's immigration laws which facilitate or encourage the reunion of a diaspora or dispersed ethnic population.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 13 states that "Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each State. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country." (emphasis added). There is disagreement as to what this actually means in practice as well as whether country refers to a state or a specific area of land. In addition, the change from State to country from the first sentence to the second clouds the issue."

The Law of Return has nothing to do with these conditions and they are misleading. It makes sense to seperate these entities.

I don't believe that Law of Return and this article are the same. One is a law, one is a concept. Each has its own separate ontological life. --Defenestrate 18:53, 15 September 2005 (UTC)


Having browsed this page and the Law of Return one, I thought I would try an overhaul. I am still new at this, so apologies if I am going too fast! I kind of got going and was going to try and do it all on the Talk page, then realized both that it would be faster to just make the changes, and that things here can be easily reverted if my edits are improper.

Particularly noting that the Law of Return article is about the Israeli law, I have tried to make this one more neutral by incorporating all of the national contexts of which I was aware. The countries are now listed in alphabetical order, and the debate about extending Israeli citizenship to ethnic Jews and ethnic Palestinians, respectively, are listed under "Israel". I did not create a separate section called "Palestine" re who if anyone should be entitled to citizenship on an ethnic basis in the nascent Palestine, but I assume someone will do that if it is an issue as well. (I would suspect that ethnic Palestinians have a right of return in that state, without prejudice to any rights they might have in other states. But that's just a guess.) --AnotherBDA 07:21, 26 October 2005 (UTC)



I deleted the phrase "***In practice however, it is very rare for any non-Jew to be granted Israeli citizenship, and*** Israel's self-identification as a Jewish state, and its pro-Jewish immigration policy is seen as a sign that the country is a home for the Jewish people" for the following reasons:

a) what does "in practice" mean? Were is there any statistical evidence? This is a substandard statement for an encyclopedia.

b) on the other hand and quite the opposite, there are indeed tens of thousands (and I personally know a few dozens of them) of non-Jewish foreigners who became Israeli citizens without converting to Judaism, either

- after they married an Israeli citizen (a crushing majority of whom are indeed Arab Muslim individuals from the Palestinian Authority, i.e. Palestinian people, marrying Israeli Arabs Muslims or any other denomination of Israeli citizens), under the legal provisions for the reunification of families.

This has even be a highly controversial point and one of present-day hottest issues in the State of Israel, as in recent years the Israeli authorities have tried to limit this huge flow of naturalizations by issuing special decrees.

Since those decrees openly discriminate between categories of people, which is strictly forbidden by all ethic, national and international rules and laws, they could not be turned into full texts of law, but were recognized as "legitimate" by the Supreme Court of Israel, considering that they serve the goal of preserving the nature of the State of Israel as a "***Jewish*** and democratic state", a highly controversial issue on it's own right;

- after they lived for a while in Israel, through naturalization.

Among such people (naturalization through residence) we find for example the Catholic (Dominican) priest Marcel-Jacques Dubois (b. 1920, originally a French citizen, naturalized Israeli in 1973), who has been the dean of the Faculty of Philosophy of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and holds many Israeli prizes, including the highest national one, the Israel Prize, and Jerusalem's Yakir Yerushalayim prize.

Therefore the aforementioned statement according to which "it is very rare for any non-Jew to be granted Israeli citizenship" is heavily prejudiced and objectively and scientifically worthless, and should even be considered as a form of slander going back to the oldest forms of rejection of Jews as a "closed society," which they historically have never been, quite the contrary.

One part of the "Impact on Israel" section states: "If a Jew born in America has the right to return to his or her homeland, then in theory, a Palestinian born in a refugee camp should have the right to return to his or her homeland. Sadly, this is not the case."

I believe those sentences are unnecessary because:

a) Both sentences seem to be restating what was written in an earlier paragraph under the heading "Palestinian": "Palestinian refugees from Israel are classed as both the individuals who left Israel and any descendants of those individuals. This stands in contrast to the UN definition of refugee as it applies to displaced persons connected with territories other than those of the State of Israel: in the latter case it refers only to those individuals who were forced to flee, not to their lineal descendants.[citation needed]"

b) The word 'sadly' clearly reflects an opinion. It is unecessary and inappropriate.

Thanks, Khendon. Do you also know anything about the issues surrounding either the Jewish or Arab "rights of return"?

  • Who supports either of these "rights"?
  • Who opposes these "rights", and why"

--Ed Poor

I just added an analysis of the right of return and I ask all participants to state their opinion on the talk page first. I moved the "israeli right of the return" to "further meanings" because it does not play a role in the negotiations, i.e. it's not part of the same political problem (even if some people use it as an argument to state the injustice and inequality of Israel's policy) Second: I don't think we should go further into discussion of this topic, that is opposing and supporting and arguments and so on. For the Arabs, it's a question of justice, for the Israelis it's an absolute no-no and a probable solution (if there ever will be one) will be, granting some refugees a right of return to the palestinian state and a pay of compensation from Israel. So far my analysis as a not really involved political scientist. --Elian

shift which would remove its identity as a Jewish state.

The introduction of 8 million Palestinians (or Americans or Ugandans, for that matter), is going to create a catastrophe, for the very simple reason that the region's food and water supply is dwindling even now, at about 9 million people; at 17 million a lot of people would have to die. --Uri

The population issue is at least partially separable from the issue of Israel's ethnic and national identity, is it not? Granting the Palestinian Arabs a right to return does not imply that eight million people would return, but it does seem to me imply a change in the definition of what (and whom) Israel is for. (After all, there are more than eight million Jews outside of Israel. [1] They have the right to return -- even though their return would cause just as much of a population problem.) It seems to me that the POV implications of calling a demographic shift a "catastrophe" are not entirely dismissed by that argument.
At least half of the 8 million live in fairly poor conditions and are discriminated against. This won't be the case in the conjenctured Palestine (to the extent that the Palestinian government won't discriminate against its own citizens). Moreover, even if Palestine receives the whole West Bank and Gaza Strip, that would still be nothing short of a demographic catastrophe. Resources are already tight the way they are at this moment. --Uri

"Nevertheless, it is very rare for a non-Jew without family connections to Israeli citizens to be granted Israeli citizenship." without additional data this sentance does not provide any information. additional data required to evaluate the statement:

  1. how many applications for citizenship....if applications are very rare then grants of citizenship will be very rare, a fortiori, even if all applications are approved.
  2. how many applicatants meet the three criteria stated here and other basic criteria. Once again, if only the very rare applicant meets these rather standard criteria then grants of citizenship will be very rare, a fortiori, even if all applications are approved.

I think a more meaningful addition would be how difficult is it to actually get the right to live and work in Israel perm? For example, with the US you need a greencard which you can win eg through a lottery. In Australia and NZ, there are quotas each year and you generally get need a certain number of points based on a variety of factors and you'll get PR. In other countries, if you work a certain number of years you'll get PR or maybe can even straight away apply for citizenship. But of course, in this case a key question is how easy/hard is it to get a work permit in the first place?

(BTW, the Israel policies are discrimintory whichever way you look at it. Whether they are fair or not is another matter but they are clearly discriminitory since you're automatically allowed citizenship based on your religion/racial background.)

No, you can apply for citizenship under the Law of Return if you meet certain criteria. You are not "automatically allowed" citizenship simply because you are a Jew; some Jews do not qualify under the Law of Return, and many non-Jews do qualify. Jayjg 03:48, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)

10% of 8 million is 373,000?[edit]

If Palestinians and their descendents number 8 million, then how does 10% equal 373,000? Jayjg 20:27, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Because it's 10% of those living in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Jordan and Lebanon – not 10% of all descendents. The 8 million figure includes those living in other areas (such as refugee camps in Syria, etc.) --Wclark 21:06, 2004 Jul 21 (UTC)
If that's the case, then the number needs to be revised, since "all" descendants would have a "right of return", including those in Syria, Europe, North America etc.
The 373,000 figure comes from the quoted survey at [2] (under section 3 "Expected behavior") and is that survey's own estimate of the number of Palestinians who would return from the areas it polled. The difference is probably partly from not counting other areas where some Palestinian refugees live, such as Syria or the U.S., but mostly due to using smaller estimates of the number of refugees. For example, the Wikipedia article Palestinian refugee cites U.N. estimates that total around 4.1 million Palestinian refugees. The 8 million figure is a relatively high-end estimate. Neow 21:12, Jul 21, 2004 (UTC)
If that's the case, then the numbers need to be brought into line with each other. Either there are 3.73 million Palestinians or there are 8 million, and 10% of that is either 373,000 or 800,000. In truth, what I think has happened here is that extremely high estimates are used to highlight the Palestinian "plight", while low estimates are used when emphasizing how little "threat" the Palestinians are to Israel. Unfortunately, these two goals produce conflicting numbers. Jayjg 21:52, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
The thing is, there's no way to fairly "revise" the numbers. If you look at the study, the percentages of refugees who want to return are very different in different areas - from 5% in Jordan up to 23% in Lebanon - and so there's no way to know (without doing another poll) how many refugees from other areas would want to return. Also, the simple fact is, nobody knows for certain exactly how many refugees there are. There may be 3 million or 8 million or somewhere in between. All we can do in this article is already done: we state that by some estimates there are as many as 8 million refugees - which is true (and relevant in the context of explaining why most Israelis oppose granting a right of return) - and we quote the study estimating that 373,000 would return from the areas it surveyed - which is an accurate description of what that study found, based on its own population estimates. So I don't see that any change is required. We can't pretend to know how to reconcile different estimates, any of which might actually be correct. Neow 22:11, Jul 21, 2004 (UTC)
We can't reconcile the differences, but we can report them. I've had a go at it. Jayjg 22:20, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I've tweaked your numbers, since the survey can't speak to the opinions of Palestinians in Syria, Northa America, or Europe -- so we can't even be sure that the 10% figure applies to the larger 4-8 million total population. All we know is that the 10% figure applies to the population estimates for refugees coming from the stated areas. I think the same point gets across (and I didn't modify your earlier change from "up to 8 million" to "4 to 8 million"). --Wclark 23:28, 2004 Jul 21 (UTC)
I've edited it as well. If the numbers really are 8 million, then the 10% who might want to emigrate to Israel means 800,000 people, and this is much more significant demographically. And if the 10% number really isn't applicable at all, then why include they whole survey in the first place? Jayjg 02:50, 22 Jul 2004 (UTC)
As much as I like parenthetical comments, that one was just too darned long. I rephrased the sentence, but retained the 800,000 figure (although I think it might be a bit much to explicitly calculate out what's already implied by the figures mentioned in the article). Also, thanks to Neow for correcting my misunderstanding of the survey results. --Wclark 03:00, 2004 Jul 22 (UTC)
The figure of 8,000,000 is taken from UNRWA, registration to UNRWA is ONLY in order to qualify for UNRWA support while the border dispute goes on. UNRWA's mandate does not cover RoR "to carry out direct Relief and Works programmes for Palestine refugees".

RoR is covered under the mandate given to UNHCR. Under UNHCR, lineal descendants are not included, although the country of return might allow lineal descendants. Given that the UNRWA mandate falls short of RoR, RoR returns by default to the UNHCR. //1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees /states: "When such protection or assistance has ceased for any reason, without the position of such persons being definitively settled in accordance with the relevant resolutions adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations, these persons shall ipso facto be entitled to the benefits of this Convention."//nofavour —Preceding unsigned comment added by Benni seidel (talkcontribs) 13:44, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

"Impact on Israel" section[edit]

This entire section seems pernicious, and introduces an external issue (the logistical effects of implimentation on another country) to, as it seems clear to me, delegitimize the fundamental treatment of the supposed "right." The concern here is to describe the "right" itself, and to describe its evolution within both historical and theoretical contexts.

The legitimacy of one's right to something is not conditional upon who would suffer as a result of implimenting it. This doesn't have to be too philosophical. "Does this right exist, or not?" Any definition of a "right" is inherently a moral statement, and objections to the existance of the right must as well be moral. To argue that Palestinians were not all forcibly removed, or to argue that the notion of "Palestinian" is not an organic ethnic term, or to reject that there ever has been a "Palestine" to which to return are all valid arguments against the notion of a Palestinian right of return, because all those statements are moral. To reject the fundamental notion of the right by claiming that implimenting it would disrupt the way Israelis currently like to consider their country is not a valid argument against right itself. Let's say that there happen to only be 100,000 Palestinian descendants declaring a Right of Return. This number would not significantly alter the demographics of Israel if they were to return... would the right then be more valid? What does the number of people have anything to do with the substance of the right? Do people retain rights only until a critical number of people wish to exercise them, and then they are revoked? This notion would have confused Locke and Voltaire very much, not to mention Maimonides or Strauss.

Also, to give a baldly biased POV, and then to simply justify its inclusion by saying "some people think this" is, sorry to say, also a violation of NPOV. So, statements like "Jewish Israelis... see the demand for a Palestinian Right of Return as merely another, more subtle way of arguing for the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state" are simply inappropriate. These statements exist to undercut the substance of the right, not to highlight the opinion of a certain group. Certainly, many different interested groups would have plenty to say about the Right of Return for Germans, Armenians, Serbians, Albanians, American Indians (neglected in this article), etc. But those objections are rightly left out of this article. To tell me that "[Palestinian repatriation] would automatically defeat the purpose of Israel's creation, doing away with a Jewish state, as a refuge for the Jews of the world" is a neutral statement is to insult anyone's intelligence. Why must only Palestinians have an asterisk by their name due to the controversy over their situation?

Finally, there exists no international notion, that I am aware of, to suggest that a state has any "right" declare itself "for" a certain ethnic group over any other (ie. to declare oneself a Jewish State). Plenty of political bodies are obstensibly "for" certain peoples, but these states have no "right" to do this, and no right to justify the denial of valid rights (such as that of Return, if it is indeed a valid right) on the basis of this ethnic ownership principle. Therefore, the Right to exist as a Jewish state is not relevant to a discussion about the Right of Return.

If the article wanted to consider the actual demographic effects of repatriation (which I fully welcome), those should be treated amorally, as in the manner of an independent policy investigation. Shortly, I will remove or restructure this section, unless the writer wishes to revise it themself.

"Re:Impact on Israel" section[edit]

I agree totally: this part of Right of Return should be deleted as it is very biased.The person who wrote this is putting up his personal opinion from an Israeli point of view to justify a "no-return" policy.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 04:49, 16 March 2007 (UTC).

Comparing the Jewish and Palestinian sections[edit]

Just an observation. The Jewish section is presented as if the Jewish right to be in Israel was never in dispute whereas the Palestinian right is presented as controversial and a "divisive issue". I wonder if this is fair. It seems that the Jewish right of return is at least as divisive and is vigorously disputed.--LeeHunter 22:15, 16 Oct 2004 (UTC)

There is currently no Jewish "right of return", if there ever was one; rather, there is an Israeli "law of return", which is simply factually described in the article. Jayjg 07:09, 17 Oct 2004 (UTC)
In that case, the Israeli "law of return" doesn't really belong here, except perhaps as a "see also" reference to a separate article. It certainly doesn't make sense that the Israeli portion precedes the Palestinian if it doesn't address the title of the article. --LeeHunter 14:24, 24 Oct 2004 (UTC)
I think it fair to state that non-Israeli Jewish rights under the Israeli law of return were never in dispute while non-Israeli Palestinian rights under the Israeli law of return are controversial. The reason for this should be clear from the way I have phrased it. The Law of Return is by definition an artefact of the Israeli state; any "right of return" is accessory to that Law. It is therefore unsurprising that rights consistent with the State of Israel's founding are uncontroversial under its laws and vice versa. Hope that makes sense. --AnotherBDA 05:38, 26 October 2005 (UTC)

I have to agree with this. The law of return should be in a seperate article. The jewish right to return could be mentined since historically, it has clearly had a strong effect on the creation of israel

The Jewish section is about the Law of Return. There is a seperate article for that. There is no need to repeat the same content here. A "See Also" section should be added to refer to it. Yodakii 13:52, 20 August 2005 (UTC)
I see no reason for the Jewish Law of return section to be included here when a seperate article about the Israeli law already exists. I believe its inclusion here makes the article biased. You might as well merge this article with Law of Return.Yodakii 04:06, 21 August 2005 (UTC)
Rights of Return are not a unique phenomenon, and many countries have them. Focussing on only one is the opposite of NPOV. If you think a merge is in order, there is a template for that. Jayjg (talk) 05:57, 21 August 2005 (UTC)

I agree[edit]

I agree with this, and I introduced some additional material on the British and League Mandate (the parts about the rights of non-Jews) and made the language a little more neutral zing(less "recognizing" a right of return, more "proposing."

It really seems to me that the author of the Jewish section had a lot of polemicism in his heart when he wrote this section. It seeks to present Zionism as a received truth, which it isn't. I also suspect that this long discussion of Jewish rights, placed above the Palestinian section, was intended to dilute the impact of that material and undermine the idea of a Palestinian right of return.


Also, why does the Palestinian section go on and on about the impact of a Palestinian return, which is theoretical, while the Jewish section says nothing at all about the hundred-years-war that Zionism instigated?

Two other points:

  • The idea that Zionism is the climax of 2,000 years of Jewish longing to return is a valid perspective, but it is far from the whole story. I added a little bit of context about the founders of Zionism and the prohibition of hastening the end. I didn't negate what was said, but I think the additional material shows that Jewish history can be used to argue for or against a Jewish right of return.
  • I made no changes reguarding this -- let's all let people have their say as much as possible -- but the idea that the Palestinian right of return would be enviromentally damaging is crap. For a hundred years, Zionism has done everything in its power to cram more Jews into a land that was fully cultivated by the end of the 19th century. They have done everything they can to push up Jewish birthrates, from paying for fertility treatments to Jews-only welfare systems.

Their fetish for land and building, massive road construction, water-intensive, export-based agriculture and settlement policies have inflicted horrific damage to the enviroment.

Now suddenly they think Israel will be overpopulated? The hypocrisy is staggering.

"Abandoned" homes[edit]

I had earlier changed this line to say that the Palestinians were "forced" to abandon their homes, which is how I understand what happened. To simply say they 'abandoned' their homes implies that they just walked away from them of their own free will, never wishing to return. My understanding is that it was more like they left their homes temporarily because of fears of violence and then were prevented from returning. Someone has reverted that to simply "abandoned" because it is supposedly more NPOV. Since I don't agree with this I've reworded the section again so that the word "abandoned" is not used. Hopefully this works for everyone. --LeeHunter 23:22, 10 Jan 2005 (UTC)

The reasons they left were many, but your re-wording hardly works, since it was highly inaccurate. I've put accurate figures in there instead. Jayjg | (Talk) 01:49, 11 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Could you provide some sources for your figures, please. Who owned the other 70% of the land? The sources that I have found from a brief search [3] [4] [5] support my original figures of somewhere around +90 percent Palestinian and +/- 7 percent Jewish. This makes intuitive sense to me but I'm open to being educated if you can document something different. --LeeHunter 15:32, 11 Jan 2005 (UTC)
The other 70% were public lands owned by the (Turkish) Ottoman government, and following that vested with the British Mandatory government. Just before Israel declared statehood the Jewish National Fund had acquired a total of 936,000 dunams of land; another 800,000 dunams had been acquired by other Jewish organizations or individuals, amounting to 8.6% of the land of that would become the state. There was never a "Palestinian" government to own the land, and individual Arabs owned only 21% of the land. Here's some sources: [6] [7] Jayjg | (Talk) 19:47, 11 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Perhaps there never was a Palestinian government to own the land but I'm not sure what that has to do with the issue. As you say, this "public" land was "owned" by one occupying power (the Turks) who passed it on to another occupying power (the British) who turned around and ceded it to a favored minority which then reserved it for the nearly exclusive use and enjoyment of their own ethnic group. If this property was truly public land, wouldn't the natural owners be the actual public that lived there, the people of Palestine (Arabs, Jews etc) and not the people of Great Britain? --LeeHunter 04:33, 12 Jan 2005 (UTC)
The Turks weren't an "occupying power", they were the legal owners of the land for centuries. And the British didn't "cede" it to anyone; rather, the majority inhabitants of the area that became Israel (Jews) declared independence, and successfully defended themselves against attacks by 6 invading and occupying armies. The "natural owners" of the land, i.e. the citizens of Israel (Jew and Arab both) then gained title, and they still own it today. Neither Jewish nor Arab citizens of Israel have "nearly exclusive use" of it. Jayjg | (Talk) 15:41, 12 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I am not entirely sure if the majority of the inhabitants of what became Israel did declare independence. The Jewish section of the population did - exactly how much of a majority were they given the need to remove the Palestinians to make a Jewish state? But that is a quibble. Surely you are oversimplifying the situation? A huge chunk of land was given by the State of Israel to the Jewish Agency which doesn't reserve nearly exclusive use of it for Jewish Israelis. It reserves entirely Jewish Israeli use of it - Arabs have had to go to court to fight for the right to rent JA land, and while one man has won, he has not yet been able to exercise that right. At least that is the situation last I heard. Finally the article states that Palestinians who remained kept their land and most of the land owned by those who fled was seized by the State of Israel. Correct me if I am wrong, but Israel has a group of "Present-Absents" (i.e. people who did not flee but were deemed to have fled or moved to another place without leaving Israel) - citizens but who had their land seized. On top of which the state rounded out a few corners by seizing some land anyway, and expelling a few more villages after the fighting stopped. And all the land of those who fled was seized, not just some of it. Surely the article ought to recognise that. Lao Wai 13:58, 9 August 2005 (UTC)

Controversial Issue[edit]

There is no POV in the Arguments against Israeli right of return. These are documentable problems. This is a controversial issue and both sides of the controversy deserve to be heard. Deleting everything that you disagree with is censorship. This controversial subject deserves to have problems from both factions listed.

Furthermore, semantically "right of return" almost always refers to a Palestinian right of return. A Jewish right of return to Israel is a very "fringy" concept with very little talk outside of a religious context. To put them in the same category is a point of view and a very bizarre one at that.

To talk about something as controversial as "Right of Return" and claim that there will be no points of view, only "history" and "facts" only ensures that the most aggressively promoted points of view will be heard.

For instance my insertions of points against Jewish right of return seem to be immediately deleted while things like " Zionists argue that ever since the destruction of the Second Temple in the year 70 CE, Jews have prayed three times a day for return to their ancestral homeland. This longing to return to the Land of Israel also became a major topic in Jewish literature and thought. In the second half of the 19th century, Zionism sought to make this longing a reality by encouraging and helping Jews from the diaspora return to the Land of Israel." remain. Why are some arguments admissable and others not?


The things you object to are simple facts, and underly the Jewish belief in their own Right of Return; the things you inserted, on the other hand, were your own personal beliefs about the merits of the various claims. Jayjg (talk) 18:54, 9 August 2005 (UTC)
Hi History, you're probably right that most of this article will resolve to POV rather than facts we can all agree on, so the important thing is to attribute the POV, and to find as reputable sources as you can. X says this, Y says that, then link to the article if it's online, or cite it if it's not. SlimVirgin (talk) 19:15, August 9, 2005 (UTC)

I am surprised that wikipedians aren't aware that modern Israeli historians searching through Israeli government archives have proven that the majority of Palestinians did not abandon their homes voluntarily but were forcibly removed either directly by violence or by the threat of violence. These Israeli historians more or less confirm what Palestinians have been saying all along. Links:

21 May 2007 Those are anti-Israel blogs, not "historical documents", and Pappe is not considered an accurate historian, he is considered a kook by anyone who is involved in history, anthropology, etc. He is not a historian, he is a leftist who is against Israel, regardless of his own national identity. He along with the others you mentioned, are known as "New Historians" In this vein many reporters have quoted the "new historians," a self-styled group of Israeli writers who claim to have exposed the falsity of Zionist "myths" about the founding of the nation. Israel, according to writers such as Benny Morris, Ilan Pappe, Avi Shlaim and Tom Segev, bears little resemblance to the heroic image purveyed in history books. For these authors the Zionist enterprise is deeply flawed, if not rotten at its heart. All these assertions have been systematically examined and refuted in articles and books by Israeli scholars, including Shabtai Teveth, Itamar Rabinovich, Efraim Karsh and others, but the media have lionized the revisionists and their themes and virtually ignored the refutations and the authorities making them.

In the first weeks of April alone leading up to Israel's birthday, dozens of articles cited the views of revisionists without any indication their claims have been discredited. Only one reporter, Nicholas Goldberg in Newsday, included the rebuttals.

He quoted Efraim Karsh, Chairman of the Mediterranean Studies Department at Kings College London and author of Fabricating Israeli History. Karsh's research finds the so-called "new historians" have manipulated and misrepresented original sources, and in effect invented a history to suit their current political agenda.

Although it is clear that Arab forces in Deir Yassin were attacking Jewish convoys trying to break the siege of Jerusalem, that the Jews counterattacked trying to dislodge those forces, and that Arab civilians were killed in the course of the conflict, not a word about these issues. Instead, an unabashedly one-sided presentation of Ilan Pappe's version, that Jews massacred Arabs there. Pappe's outrageous claims repeated that "massacres were part of a Zionist plan to forcibly expel or kill as many Arabs as possible."

In fact, counter-evidence in the Deir Yassin story has been offered repeatedly not only by Jewish but by Arab sources. For example, as the Jerusalem Report noted in an April 2, 1998 article:

In a BBC television series, "Israel and the Arabs: the 50 Year Conflict," Hazem Nusseibeh, an editor of the Palestine Broadcasting Service's Arabic news in 1948, describes an encounter at the Jaffa Gate of Jerusalem's Old City with Deir Yassin survivors and Palestinian leaders, including Hussein Khalidi, the secretary of the Arab Higher Committee (the representative body of the Arabs of British Palestine).

"I asked Dr. Khalidi how we should cover the story," recalled Nusseibeh, now living in Amman. "He said, 'We must make the most of this.' So we wrote a press release stating that at Deir Yassin children were murdered, pregnant women were raped. All sorts of atrocities."

A Deir Yassin survivor identified as Abu Mahmud, said the villagers protested at the time. "We said, 'There was no rape.' [Khalidi] said, 'We have to say this, so the Arab armies will come to liberate Palestine from the Jews.'"

Unmentioned are Pappe's extremist political agenda as an activist in the Israeli Communist party and former candidate in the 1996 Knesset elections on the Communist party ticket. The party platform opposes the Zionist character of Israel and calls for resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict on the basis of formulas that would entail the dissolution of Israel.


I've reverted the anon's edits to the intro, because they're introducing POV and odd English e.g. "Although no technical definition of right of return exists, some may view it as a right of return is a right, held by members of an ethnic or national group, to assurance of immigration and naturalization into the nation of their homeland." The sentence is hard to parse, and it's not clear what a "technical definition" would be. And this: "Still others may view it as a right granted to individuals and their direct descendents, not to groups" is an unattributed POV. SlimVirgin (talk) 00:02, August 9, 2005 (UTC)

The POV insertions are continuing with no discussion here, so I'm reverting. Latest edit was that the Palestinian right of return is a moral one, but the Jewish right of return is an arbitrary law. SlimVirgin (talk) 02:57, August 9, 2005 (UTC)


I've also deleted the POV definition of right of return. There needs to be some background as to where the definition comes from and who claims it as a definition. Once again, factions are claiming "facts" and refusing to acknowledge that there are no agreed on "facts" in this issue. It would be much more honest to present "he says/she says" listings. [[User::Historyisapov|Historyisapov]]

The intro needs to stick to the facts, as the previous one was a bit of a personal essay. Which countries have a law of return (either so-called or called something else)? In which political discourses is a right of return referred to? So far as I know, there are two laws: Israel and Germany, and apart from those, one political discourse: Palestinian. Therefore the intro should state this and nothing else. SlimVirgin (talk) 18:44, August 9, 2005 (UTC)
And do the Germans even still have one? I think the purpose of it was to allow Germans from the east to settle in the west. SlimVirgin (talk) 19:12, August 9, 2005 (UTC)
I was pretty sure it still existed. Jayjg (talk) 19:23, 9 August 2005 (UTC)

70,000 Indians[edit]

Aside from this being a misleading addition to the article (it is actually Indian Jews), and being overstated (the number given is high), this is also trivia, as Indian Jews represent only a tiny portion of the number of Jews who have moved to Israel. Jayjg (talk) 18:50, 9 August 2005 (UTC)

Inapproiate juxatposing[edit]

Firstly, it is inapprioate to juxtapose the Israli "Law of Return" and Palestinian "Right of Return". In addition to this error, why "Impact on Palestinians" section? Please stop making bias definitions.

Can you explain what you mean about the juxtaposition of the two? Also, there seem to be several new user accounts editing here. If you're the same person, could you choose one account and stick to it, please, and sign your posts? SlimVirgin (talk) 20:01, August 9, 2005 (UTC)
To the anon, you can't delete the section about the impact on Israel just because you think there should be a section about the impact on others. Please write that section if you want one, use reputable sources and attribute what you write to them, choose one account and stick to it, discuss your edits on talk, sign your posts on this page, and read our content policies. Otherwise your posts will be reverted. Sorry to write to you in this way, but this back-and-forth is a waste of everyone's time. Also, if you revert more than three times in 24 hours, you may be blocked from editing. See Wikipedia:Sign your posts on talk pages, Wikipedia:No original research, Wikipedia:Neutral point of view, Wikipedia:Cite sources, Wikipedia:Reliable sources, and Wikipedia:Three revert rule. Many thanks, SlimVirgin (talk) 22:55, August 9, 2005 (UTC)

Definition revisited[edit]

OK, I feel somewhat bad about jumping in and changing this, but there is an important issue that needs to be dealt with. "No POV" does not mean that "My POV is OK and your's isn't" Either we need to accept the fact that this is a controversial subject and list arguments on each side of the issue or we need to stick to absolute FACTS like UN resolutions and declarations as well as referencable statements by important players. Thank you. Historyisapov (talk)

That's fine, but the previous version had no POV in it, and actually described what the article is about. A summary of the article contents is not "POV". And you've been blocked indefinitely as a "Disruptive sock/role account", please stop evading that block. Jayjg (talk) 21:08, 10 August 2005 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Fair point, but the sentence you replaced the intro with is not a fact: "The right of return usually refers to various ethical claims surrounding various UN declarations and/or resolutions." You'll have to produce a source that says this if you want the edit to stick. SlimVirgin (talk) 21:10, August 10, 2005 (UTC)

Reason for my revert[edit]

An anon added the last sentence to this paragraph: "Significantly, the UN maintains a separate and distinct definition of the word "refugees" for Palestinians who left Israel in 1948 and/or 1967. Palestinian refugees from Israel are classed as both the individuals who left Israel and any descendants of those individuals. This stands in contrast to the UN definition of refugee as it applies to other displaced peoples, as in the latter case it refers only to those individuals who were forced to flee and not to their lineal descendants. This is in part because few refugee populations have been displaced for as long (almost 58 years) as the Palestinian refugees of 1948."

I removed the sentence because it begs the question. The paragraph is saying the UN maintains a distinct def of the word for Palestinians. To add that this is because few other populations have been displaced for so long is to overlook that they wouldn't be regarded as still being displaced were it not for the distinct UN definition, so the addition of that sentence makes the paragraph somewhat circular. SlimVirgin (talk) 22:55, 5 November 2005 (UTC)

Majority of Land for Jewish Use Only-- very controversial[edit]

This cannot be stated as "fact" it is beyond controversial-- it has been shown to be mostly fabrication.


There is absolutely no evidence that this definition of Right of Return has any basis whatsoever. The right of return refers to the right of displaced people (refugees) to return to their home communities. This is guaranteed under the UN declaration of human right. Most of this article should be moved to Repatriation laws.

removed questionable material[edit]

I removed this material:

This would amount to approximately 373,000 individuals (based on the population estimates used in the study) and does not include Palestinians living in other areas, such as North America, Europe, or Syria (which might bring the total to over 800,000). The majority said that rather than returning to live in Israel, they would prefer to live in a Palestinian state, either in an existing Palestinian area or in an area that becomes Palestinian as the result of a territorial exchange.
These results are in stark contrast with Israeli public opinion. However, it should be noted that the Israeli concern of a demographic shift is not based on the fear of a short term shift alone. Although disputed, it is possible that in a few decades from now the Palestinians living inside Israel will constitute a majority because of their significantly larger birth rate, and even a comparatively small influx of Palestinians would hasten that event [8].
There would also be an immensely complex and expensive legal disputes over the ownership of property. Prior to 1948 Jews owned almost 7% of the land and the Palestinians around 21%. Palestinians who stayed in Israel owned 3% of the land, and kept ownership of it, while the remaining 18% owned by exiled Palestinians was expropriated. Whilst Israeli-Arabs (20% of the population) own 3% of the land, and Jews own 3.5% of the land individually, most of the land (93.5%) is owned by the State and international Jewish organizations.

The statistics in the first paragraph are not coherent and the remainder of the paragraph adds nothing substantive (if only 10% wanted to go to israel, then obviously 90% don't). The other two paragraphs are highly speculative and don't belong, and bordering on original research; let's stick to facts. The demographic issues in the second paragraph are already mentioned in the text up above that still remains. I also don't think that the source cited in the paragraph is especially credible. As for the third paragraph, I don't think it's especially relevant, and I don't think the statistics are at all relevant. No doubt there would be major land disputes -- but obviously there would be many other major issues as well (as there would be in any major population absorption), and certainly these would be addressed in any putative agreement. Benwing 06:34, 8 January 2007 (UTC)

Immigration laws of the Muslim world[edit]

what are laws for immigration to Jordan? are Jewish refugees from Jordan allowed to live in Jordan? yosef aetos

Jews are excluded form citizenship in Jordan, and several other Arab states. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:51, 21 August 2008 (UTC)

how is Jordan related to Palestinians? If you want to edit this article fairly, you must differentiate between Jewish and Israeli - Muslim and Arabs, and most importantly between Palestinians and other Arab nationalities, as there is a big difference. To clarify the point here is a hypothetical example: There is a difference, a logical one at least, between a European and a Greek, for example. Europeans from Ukraine, lets say, are not entitled in Greek lands, nationally - except under specified laws. This is a completely hypothetical example, just to clarify the point for the above users. Lets produce a respectable article - a descent source of information - not a political description or opinion of the situation. --Zakouma (talk) 07:04, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Oddball Countries[edit]

Is it possible for anybody to do a little research into those oddball countries which have next to no information concerning them (I saw Japan, Poland, and Lithuania)? Sire22 20:31, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

POV and unsourced.[edit]

this shouldn't be in here, or if so, put sources in. But as it stands, the author is inserting their own POV for fact.

"Some critics (What critics?) 'argue that Jews comprise a religion (Not based by genetics or fact, political critics can't debate genetics: ,, , *not to mention that Secular (esp) gentile critics have no place arguing that another group of people are based as a religion as their only defining feature because that is their political opinion.*

) whose members hail from many nations and do not constitute a people or a nation, and that they can therefore have no right of self-determination to exercise. Within this group, some argue that Jews are citizens of their own states and belong to the nations they come from, and are therefore foreign to Palestine. ( What palestine? There is no palestine. Wishful thiking is POV. Since all Jews came from Israel - this is not only established fact and world wide acknowledged, there is historical and archeological basis to this. (aside from those in the Middle East teaching that Jews were never in Israel and Islam is the first religion). What is foreign to Israel, is every other group of people. They all took over the land to destroy the Jews and as conquest. After the Jews got their land back, Legally through Britain giving it back, the Arabs once again tried to invade and conquer - and the small portion of Israel that was bequeathed back to the Jews, was slightly widened through the Israelis fighting back against a war they did not start. They captured land fair and square. If captured land must always be given back to that from which it was taken from. The Jews would have Israel anyway. The boundaries of most Middle East countries were arbitrarily fixed by the Western powers after Turkey was defeated in World War I and the French and British mandates were set up. The areas allotted to Israel under the UN partition plan had all been under the control of the Ottomans, who had ruled Palestine from 1517 until 1917. When Turkey was defeated in World War I, the French took over the area now known as Lebanon and Syria. The British assumed control of Palestine and Iraq. In 1926, the borders were redrawn and Lebanon was separated from Syria. Britain installed the Emir Faisal, who had been deposed by the French in Syria, as ruler of the new kingdom of Iraq. In 1922, the British created the emirate of Transjordan, which incorporated all of Palestine east of the Jordan River. This was done so that the Emir Abdullah, whose family had been defeated in tribal warfare in the Arabian peninsula, would have a Kingdom to rule. None of the countries that border Israel became independent until this century. Many other Arab nations became independent after Israel. Based on this, they say that this nullifies Jewish self-determination since the concept of self-determination only applies to land that a person is a native in ('Then why does this not apply to Jordanians,Egyptians, etc. calling themselves palestinians? Why is ayone who thinks they are "palestinian" are allowed to call themselves such regardless of their actual nationality?' Other critics argue that nation-states are outmoded and unjust in any case, and that the Westphalian notion of a right to self-determination as embodied in the U.N. Charter should therefore give way to post-national states which allow their citizens to mobilize marketplace or voluntary mechanisms for cultural preservation, no state institutions."

NO source, no nothing it should not be here. If you want to put critics in, put them in, and cite their sources.

No right of return[edit]

Would it be worth mentioning that the right of return is a fairly new concept? Millions of Quakers, Huguenots, Protestants, Catholics, Jews, etc. fled various European countries due to religious persecution. Their descendants generally have no special right of return to those countries.

No doubt there are similar situations all over the world. 15:34, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

Except that we now have the UN and it's obligations which extend to all Member states, We also have Conventions and resolutions, which were NOT in place prior to the UN. nofavour —Preceding unsigned comment added by Benni seidel (talkcontribs) 13:51, 21 September 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one WikiProject had rated the article as start, and the rating on other projects was brought up to start class. BetacommandBot 19:36, 9 November 2007 (UTC)

Palestine and Israel sections unbalanced[edit]

Palestine is shown as a subsection under Israel. That is inherently POV and implies that Israel is inclusive of the whole area, a patently false claim, since Palestine also exists within the same geographical area. The two sections should both be at the same level, that is, Palestine deserves it's own H1 heading, just as Israel, or any other country does. Tagging this section for disputed neutrality is correct, and I endorse. — Becksguy (talk) 19:51, 15 May 2008 (UTC)

No one has responded in four days, so I changed Palestine to H1 level, same as all the other entries, to remove inherent POV imbalance based on hierarchy. No content changed. Also fixed POV tag to POV-section tag, since it's not article level. — Becksguy (talk) 17:42, 19 May 2008 (UTC)

Israel is a country. "Palestine" is a vague geographic area, and possible future country. Since Palestinians demand a "right of return" to the existing country of Israel, the previous hierarchy was logical and factual, not "POV". Jayjg (talk) 00:36, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

The Palestinians have the right of return to a larger area than that occupied by Israel, out of the total geographical area of Palestine, especially historically. Even currently, and most importantly, the Gaza Strip, West Bank, and East Jerusalem are not part of Israel. It's a logical fallacy, as well as a POV violation, and a factual error to refer to all areas of Palestine as Israel, when there are other areas of Palestine, at various times, that are not part of the State of Israel, including parts of Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, currently, as well as under the Mandate, the Ottomans, and other empires going back to before the Roman Empire two millennia ago. It just doesn't compute. Also, we are not talking about states here, we are talking about an ethnic and cultural homeland for a displaced people. That's the whole point to the right of return. And even if we were talking about states, Palestine is a state, so declared in 1988, and so recognized by about half the world's governments today. And apparently most Palestinians don't want to be Israeli citizens. — Becksguy (talk) 01:58, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

Original research - note to IP editor from 86.108.nnn.nnn range[edit]

IP editor, the paragraphs you are repeatedly inserting into this article (as well as to Palestinian right of return) are unsourced. They appear to be your own personal viewpoints, created through original research, which is not allowed on Wikipedia. Please review our policy against origianl research, especially the part about using material published by reliable sources in a way that constitutes original research. Also, consider getting a user account, rather than utilizing multiple IP addresses, whcih could lead to having some of those blocked under our sockpuppet policy. Canadian Monkey (talk) 22:24, 4 September 2008 (UTC)


I think the title "Israel" should be changed to Israel/Palestine. Especially since the Palestinians are discussed in this section. --Michael1408 19:39, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

Impact on Israel[edit]

Further to discussion above, I am removing this section. (talk) 19:03, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

Israel and the occupied territories[edit]

Is there any objection to changing the Israeli section to say that it gives the right to live in Israel and the Israeli-occupied territories? (talk) 19:44, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

Only objection is that legally it is Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory - in reference to the wholesome of the geographic territories occupied after the six-day war. Most, if not all, international organizations (under international mandates and laws - i.e UN institutions). An example is the UNCHR . --Zakouma (talk) 07:19, 9 July 2009 (UTC)


The section on 'Britain' (and I am changing that to 'United Kingdom', by the way) needs work. The general thrust is that an Act of Parliament gave people of British descent immigration rights. That is not quit the case. A series of Acts (passed 1962, 1968, 1971, and 1983)RESTRICTED the once very generous immigration laws of the UK. One way in which Citizenship can be achieved is by having a by descent from a UK citizen. The article then claims that this was intended to give citizenship to ethnic English, Scots, Welsh or Irish abroad. In fact the sum total of all this legislation didn't give any immigration rights to people who would not have already had them, they excluded a number of other groups. They are specifically NOT based on ethnicity, as the artilce implies. A British-born UK-citizen ancestor of any ethnic origin (Jewish, Italian, Polish, Indian, Irish etc) is sufficient. In fact, Adoption is sometimes sufficient, so there does not have to be any ethnic connection. We need a citation for the idea that the intention of this succession of legislation was intended to benefit any particular ethnic group, or that has to be removed. A short snippet from a speech giving the personal motivations of one MP in voting for one particular piece of legislation (and it's unclear which of the four relevant Acts of Parliament this refers to) has been given as supporting evidence. This MP dioes not seem to have had a hand in drawing any of the legislation. And as individual MPs support measures for a varietry of personal reasons that are often unconnected with the Bill's original intention, this does not demonstrate to motivation of the Government of the day. Indisciplined (talk) 16:14, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Dubious blurb on Auld alliance[edit]

The part about dual citizenship French/Scottish sounds to me highly dubious. Following from the Act of Union 1707, there has been a single British citizenship, and the UK had been at war with France several times. The cited source is a historic accomodation site — it has absolutely no academic value. I've seen the same information being cited on many sites, but all of them are amateur and none cites the actual 1903 law (if discussing a French law, one should at least give a date and perhaps a Journal Officiel reference). David.Monniaux (talk) 20:55, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

lead and background[edit]

The lead and background sections are POV. See page 200 and onward here for an example of an opposing opinion. The main issue is how one's "own country" is defined. There's certainly no agreement that prior personal citizenship is not a requirement.
I'm open to suggestions on how to fix this. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 18:01, 27 August 2009 (UTC)

your addition did not make this better. the opposing opinions are covered in the rest of the article. don't continue to revert - try to gain consensus here on talk. untwirl(talk) 17:29, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
As you can see I brought this up over a month ago and recieved no reply until now.
Anyway, the lead should at least reflect the fact that the right of return as recognized by international law hinges on the definition of "one's own country", which many if not most scholars interpret to mean citizens or nationals of the relevant country.
Did you read the source I provided above? Have a look also at notes 46, 77, and 78 at Palestinian right of return. These talk about a right of return in general, not only as applied to the Arab-Israeli conflict and include the UN commissioned Study of Discrimination in Respect of the Right of Everyone to Leave any Country, Including His Own, and to Return to His Country. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 18:05, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
the lead covers the fact that there are many interpretations of what "one's own country" means. Please add the specifics from your source to the background section - it is sorely lacking in references. thanks. untwirl(talk) 18:29, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
I disagree. The lead as it is now reads as if a person can decide unilaterally that they have a right of return to any country they chose. All they need to do is consider it their "homeland". I think we both understand that's not the case. There is wide agreement that people have a right to "return" or "enter" a country they are citizens or nationals of. The interpretation that prior citizenship/nationality is not required is a minority view and the way the lead is worded now gives it undue weight. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 18:43, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
On closer reading of the lead, it states that this is a right that applies to an "ethnic or national group". This is also incorrect. It is an individual right. It is stated as such both in the Universal Decleration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
The whole lead needs reworking. Suggestions? No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 18:55, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

(out) To start us off, here are quotes from the relevant instruments of international law

As you can see, there's no mention of "ethnic or national group". This is an individual right. Part of the problem we have here is that this article mixes "right of return" as part of international law and "right of return" as applied in the immigration laws of certain states. The bulk of the article is about the latter kind. I think we should consider splitting it.

Anyway, I think the lead should read The term right of return refers to the principle in international law that an individual has a right to immigration and naturalization in certain countries, stated as a right to "return" or "enter" into "his country". This belief is sometimes reflected in special consideration in a country's immigration laws (called "repatriation") which facilitate or encourage the reunion of a diaspora or dispersed ethnic population." No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 19:45, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

here's the current one, for comparison's sake:
"The term right of return refers to the principle in international law that members of an ethnic or national group have a right to immigration and naturalization into the country that they, the destination country, or both consider to be that group's homeland, often independent of prior personal citizenship in that country. This belief is sometimes reflected in special consideration in a country's immigration laws (called "repatriation") which facilitate or encourage the reunion of a diaspora or dispersed ethnic population."
i think the overuse of quotation marks in your version isn't encyclopedic, while the current version explains what each of those versions mean. though, the wording could probably be a little better. i'll play around with it a bit. untwirl(talk) 21:32, 12 October 2009 (UTC)
The current lead is factually incorrect. That isn't very encyclopedic either. The quoted parts in the version I suggested are those words which are significant in the legal interpretation of the law, which is why I put "stated as" there. We could change that bit to ...stated as the "right to return to his country" or "right to enter his own country".
I'm open to suggestions, of course. Keep in mind that "ehtnic or national group" and "homeland" don't appear in the relevant instruments and should not be in the lead. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 21:52, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

Agree with No More Mr Nice Guy. As a principle in international law, this is an individual right, and nowhere do the source documented (the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights refer to ethnic or national groups. Millmoss (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 00:15, 13 October 2009 (UTC).

I'm not really happy with the "his country of origin" bit. That's not the way the texts word it and is too open to interpretation. I still think we'll need "his country" in quotes, with something indicating this is the actual wording. No More Mr Nice Guy (talk) 19:23, 13 October 2009 (UTC)


I'm curious: do the Germans let German Swiss and Austrians (citizens of German-speaking countries) naturalize under Aussiedler? —Quintucket (talk) 19:05, 9 February 2012 (UTC)

"Right to return" for Indonesian Dutch citizens?[edit]

So right after Indonesia ceased to officially be a Dutch colony and Indonesia was in power of the islands, the Dutch government declared something very similar to a right of return, only most citizens didn't truly "return", they just stayed in what is lawfully the same country. People living in Indonesia could freely migrate to the European Netherlands, as that's where they lived before according to the law. The same happened approximately a decade later with Suriname. KarstenO (talk) 16:23, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

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Right of Return in CIL[edit]

By contrast, the right of return has not passed into customary international law, although it remains an important aspirational human right. Instead, international law gives each country the right to decide for itself to whom it will give citizenship.

These two sentences appear to be wrong. Citing Lawand:

2.3.1 The right to return as part of customary international law The fact that the right to return is expressly recognized in most international human rights instruments and draft declarations, that the constitutions, laws and jurisprudence of many States formally recognize it, that it is expressly protected in international humanitarian law instruments, and that it is consistently referred to in resolutions of UN organs dealing with the rights of refugees generally, supports the argument that the right exists in customary international law, although its precise content is difficult to define. At the very least, State practice indicates that a resident national will not be refused the right of re-entry.

Lawand clearly argues that the Right of Return is part of CIL. Then the sentence "international law gives each country the right to decide for itself to whom it will give citizenship" is true but not really relevant. States does not have the right to refuse reentry of their citizens. Also I'm not sure why the cited source Liechtenstein v. Guatemala (the Nottebohm case) is relevant here. ImTheIP (talk) 23:01, 28 May 2017 (UTC)