Being Jerusalemite : A Jordanian Refugee in Israel


My daughter went to the Residency Office in Lyon to renew her residency as a student over there. She has been studying in France for the last four years, and things were usually fine.

I was telling her about my bitter experience of today’s suppressive feelings as I was renewing her sister’s Travel document from the ministry of interior in “East” Jerusalem.

We both agreed that regardless to the long waiting the treatment was different.

However, as if there is a curse following the Palestinian being, she sent me an hour later a photo with her new residency written on it: “A Jordanian refugee in Israel.”

She tried at the beginning or rationalize with them saying that this was wrong. She is not a Jordanian refugee in Israel.

They insisted she is.

She was trying to explain to them that she was Jerusalemite. She tried or explains her status, and they insisted she was lying and that she was a refugee.

Somehow, apparently, together with the crisis of refugees she was a cause of threat as an assumed refugee. A confirmed refugee after that new residency that gave the employee a reason to panic and considers her a potential threat, to a level where she forced her to leave, and when my daughter refused to insist that this is a mistake, they called the police or get her out.

The woman was telling her: You are a liar. You are a refugee. This is not even a passport that you are carrying “.

My daughter called me crying, trying to get out the whole feeling of humiliation she got experienced being dragged out of place by the police in front of people watching her in what felt like a public humiliation act. She was questioning something else: “ Am I a Jordanian refugee?” the whole thing made her question her identity. What she knows as basic rights. All those laws that define her special status as a person living under occupation with a special status. A status that the international law, with a country, likes France that secures the current situation of Jerusalem that secures the status of Jerusalemites.

While we spend our lives carrying a nationality that is not ours. Living in our country as “immigrants,” moving around with a document that is not a passport that calls on a state of panic each time we check through borders. Moreover, then an employee who decided to carry on the Zionist vision of Israel with Jerusalem as the unified capital with the no dignified, some day dead people, also forces us on new definitions.

Did this woman decide a law? Alternatively, was it her idea?

This is a question that the French government should answer.


  1. I cannot understand the confusion unless it is a French policy now…..all I can say is that they are all running scared because of recent attacks….that does not excuse the humiliation but fear is a powerful motivator…..good post my friend….chuq

    1. It is not a french policy . I think it was a single act from one person who could be both ignorant and racist , and maybe a Zionist fan. The french consulate in jerusalem found what happened completely bizarre and the consul general will directly address Lyon’s governance. The Palestinian official level also found it completely unacceptable and violating to basic int’l standards and laws in regards of Jeruslaem status and they will be addressing the french government asking for an official inquiry .

      1. Good luck with that…..ignorant and racist sounds like the reason….there is a lot of that going around in this world….hope your daughter is feeling better….chuq

      2. I feel I need to apologize for the stupidity of others….I am so sorry for her grief and her pain….I wish I could understand the thinking of these people but I cannot….I was taught to be better than that….chuq

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