Arab NGO: End Passover ban on bread products in hospitals

Arab human rights group Adalah protests Passover ban on bread products in Israeli hospitals claiming it discriminates against Israeli Arabs.


Selling bread at Jaffa Gate, Passover
Selling bread at Jaffa Gate, Passover
Aryeh King

Arab anti-Zionist NGO Adalah based in Israel and funded by the EU, said it plans to file a legal appeal protesting a ban on bringing leavened bread products into Israeli hospitals during the Passover holiday.

In a statement Thursday, Adalah - which calls itself 'The Legal Center for ArabIc Minority Rights in Israel '- and which does not believe there should be a Jewish state, said the ban forces Arab Israelis to adhere to Jewish religious law, which forbids the consumption of leavened bread during the holiday. Adalah said it is the third consecutive year that the organization has sought to overturn the ban.

If leavened foods are allowed in hospitals, however, it will force Jews not to adhere to their religious law, as leavened foods are not allowed to be seen or be present in Jewish-owned property during the holiday. In addition, hospital dishes and cutlery would not be able to be used by Jewish patients on Passover.

The Israeli daily Haaretz also reported Thursday that for the first time in years, the Jerusalem municipality is enforcing the law against the public display of leavened bread during Passover, a sign of the growth in the number of people adhering to tradition. According to Haaretz, city authorities confiscated bread products from one vendor near the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City and prevented others from selling their goods.