State of Palestine recognition

  • The Diversity of Citizenship of Palestinians and its Impact on their Mobility: Passport and Visa Issues

    This article explores the formal impact of various citizenships and travel documents held by Palestinians on their freedom to engage in international travel. Based on a theoretical analysis of passports and the global visa regime, it claims that international recognition is not only pre-requisite of statehood but also affects the scope of mobility in cases of citizens of de facto states, including the Palestinian Authority. The research is focused on the following themes: the status of the population holding a Palestinian Authority Passport in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in comparison to Palestinians who are citizens of Israel and carry passports of this state, the exceptional situation of East Jerusalemites as well as the case of Palestinians with Jordanian passports. Visa availability and other formal barriers for international travel are also examined. The argumentation is supported by the analysis of visa restriction indexes referring to the Palestinian Authority and to Israel. The article concludes that the mobility of Palestinians varies to a large extent depending on travel documents held and the recognition of a citizenship and the passport that comes with it is strictly dependent of the recognition of state sovereignty. Although in some cases citizenship can be divorced from the international recognition, the scope of visa-free mobility related to passports is always impaired.

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