The Criteria for Palestinian Foreign Lecturers Are Now Set by Israel

Jakarta, IDN Times – Israel’s Ministry of Defense plans to decide which foreign lecturers will be allowed to teach at Palestinian universities in the West Bank. Israel will also determine what topics they can teach.

The new set of rules was issued by the Coordinating Ministry for Government Activities in the Regions (COGAT). Lecturers from abroad can work only if they meet special criteria set by Israel, reported Middle East Eyes, Tuesday (8/3/2022).

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1. Minimum doctoral degree

Whoops!  The Criteria for Palestinian Foreign Lecturers Are Now Set by IsraelResearch Illustration (IDN Times/Arief Rahmat)

Desired lecturers and researchers must be outstanding and at least have a doctorate degree. In addition, they must apply for a visa at the Israeli consulate in their country before traveling to the West Bank.

COGAT also stipulates a limited number of teaching visas, which will not exceed 100. The new rules were issued last month by the military general at COGAT but will come into effect in early May.

Apart from lecturers, the number of annual visas for students will also be limited to 150. These visas are issued to international students who wish to study at universities in Palestine.

2. Restrictions are also imposed on international students

Whoops!  The Criteria for Palestinian Foreign Lecturers Are Now Set by IsraelPalestinian students in the Gaza Strip at graduation celebrations in 2019. (Twitter/Aya Isleem)

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COGAT and the Ministry of Defense will have the power to limit the academic subjects taken by international students. Candidates must also conduct an interview at the Israeli consulate as part of their visa application.

One of the documents that COGAT is required to submit as part of a visa application by students or lecturers is an official invitation letter issued by the Palestinian Authority (PA).

Teacher and student visas will be valid for one year, with the possibility of extension. Lecturers can teach for five non-consecutive years. They have to leave the country for nine months after 27 months of teaching to comply with Israeli regulations.

Meanwhile, international students can stay for four years to complete their undergraduate or post-doctoral degree, and then they have to drop out.

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3. Visa rules apply to countries that have diplomatic relations with Israel

Whoops!  The Criteria for Palestinian Foreign Lecturers Are Now Set by IsraelIsrael flag illustration ( Meir Clancy)

The new procedure will cover all students and academics traveling to the West Bank from countries with strong diplomatic ties to Israel, including the UK and the European Union.

Meanwhile, according to the media Haaretz, citizens of Jordan, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco, all of whom have new diplomatic relations with Israel, can only apply for a shorter study and teaching visa under strict rules.

The new rules will also determine the time of visas for NGO workers in the Palestinian territories and for investors and business people who wish to work in the West Bank.

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