Muslim judge sits permanently on Israel’s Supreme Court
Khaled Kabub has been appointed the first Muslim judge to have a permanent seat on Israel’s Supreme Court, judicial authorities announced Monday.
Over 20% of Israeli citizens are Arabs, and there has been an Arab jurist on the Supreme Court since 2003, but all previous appointees have been Christians.
Kabub, 63, became the first Muslim permanently appointed to court in the country where Arabs, Christians and Muslims have complained of systematic discrimination.
Previously a judge at the Tel Aviv District Court, Kabub was one of four new judges appointed by a committee made up of Supreme Court justices, ministers, lawmakers and lawyers.
Born in Jaffa, he studied history and Islam at Tel Aviv University. He studied law there, then worked in private practice before becoming a judge.
The only other Muslim to serve on the Supreme Court was Abdel Rahman Zoabi, who was granted a temporary one-year term in 1999.
Israel’s Supreme Court regularly hears cases that touch on hot spots in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, including alleged violations by troops in the occupied West Bank.
The court is also set to rule on efforts by seven Palestinian families to overturn lower court rulings evicting them from their homes in the burning neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah in Israeli-occupied East Jerusalem.
Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah have complained of repeated attacks by Israeli settlers, who reside next to them in homes taken from Palestinians in recent years.
Last year, tensions rose in the neighborhood after an Israeli court ordered the eviction of several Palestinian families in favor of Israeli settlers.