Searching annulated Israeli citizenship without ID #general #israel


Kristina Pfeifer
 

Hello everybody,

I have a weird situation here and maybe you got some advice for me:

Recently my mother died and now indications come up that I had Israeli citizenship for a few years when I was a child. It was probably annulated without my knowledge and as all documents in that direction are gone, I do not have an ID of the would-be former passport. I was able to narrow down my possible citizenship between the years 1986 and 1994.

Now, I already went to the Israeli embassy but they can only help me if I can refer to an Israeli ID. Which I do not know, after all, of course. I already contacted the Jewish Agency as recommended but they are very busy and the process will take time. Now I am also looking for other/additional means how I can get information from the Israeli census based on my birthdate and name back then only. It must be somehow very obvious information so there must be a way.

Any ideas and recommentations for a good procedure on that?
You would help me a lot.

Kind regards, Kristina


--
Sincerely, Kristina Pfeifer from Austria

(My given first name is a post-war panic reaction after the survival of my grandma.)


Yehuda Berman
 

How do you know that you had Israeli citizenship? If your parent/s was/were Israeli citizens at the time of your birth, you are automatically an Israeli citizen and your ID appears on your Israeli birth certificate. If they immigrated with you as a child you automatically became a citizen at the same time they did. Cancelling or annulling Israeli citizenship is not a simple process and has to be applied for, and the Minister of the Interior has to approve it individually. Very few people cancel their citizenship, for that very reason. Even if they later become citizens of another country and renounce their previous citizenship, that doesn't count as far as the Israeli government is concerned - only going through the Israeli renunciation procedure counts.
But why do you need to know? Curiosity? Are you going to Israel as a tourist and are afraid of being drafted into the army? But if you don't know, neither does the the Israeli army. Finding out is just as hard and time-consuming for the government as it is for you - and why would they bother to search? If you immigrate to Israel, then army service is mostly a matter of your age and visa status. Or are you applying for citizenship in a country which demands that you renounce previous citizenship? But how do they know that you may have had Israeli citizenship unless you tell them? And why would you tell them if you yourself don't know? 
Yehuda Berman


dan.efrat@...
 

As Yehuda Berman wrote, cancelling or annulling Israeli citizenship is a lengthy process that very few people choose to go through. You may try contacting the Israeli Population and Immigration Authority (PIBA) which is under the Israeli Interior Ministry, at the address below. It is worth a shot. Prior to contacting them, I recommend that you gather all the information/evidence you have, including any potential Israeli ID numbers that you may have in your possession (yours or relative's), all relevant names, dates etc. Israeli ID numbers have nine digits, with older numbers starting with one or more zeros (which are sometimes omitted when people write their number) and newer numbers starting with a digit other than zero. Unlike in the US, where Social Security numbers (the US equivalent of ID number) are prone to identity theft and are kept confidential, Israeli ID numbers are used everywhere and are not considered confidential information.

Piba Central Contact Center
Dial from abroad: +972-2-6294666
Email: info@...
Telephone work hours - Sunday to Thursday, from 8am to 4pm (Israel time)

Good luck

Dan Efrat
Cherry 
Hill, NJ, USA (originally from Israeli)
Researching: Israelit (from Novogrudok, Belarus and from Riga area in Latvia), Rabinowitz (Dyatlovo/Zhetl, Belarus), Pruss and Koifman (Ukraine)


Relly coleman
 

Why did so many Israelis living abroad denounce their Israeli citizenship:

According to Israeli law, if one of the parents has Israeli citizenship, their children are automatically Israeli citizenship, regardless of where they were born and if they ever visited Israel.  

Before the change in Israeli law,  all such children were required to serve in the IDF.  Ahead of each visit to Israel, you had to go to an Israeli Consulate and get an 'exit permit' for your child (which served as a waiver from serving in the army for the duration of the visit).  Without such permit, you could not leave Israel and would be drafted into the army.  Your two weeks visit could thus last 2-3 year.  This happened to many. 

The only way to avoid the risk of unintented drafting into the army, was for the parents to denounced their Israeli citizenship when their child was still a minor, which resulted in the child losing his.  This was the advise given by the Israeli consulate at the time, which many Israelis followed.  Subsequently, the law was changed so that children born and living outside Israel or who left at a young age, are no longer liable for serving in the IDF. 

Relly Coleman


Kristina Pfeifer
 

Hello everybody,

Thank you all for your answers! I also got private messages by people who tried to help me. I am very thankful for the help. Now, I got the address of a lawyer in Israel and I have already written to him. I hope he can help me because my case is not easy but I need to dig into this. Sorry about the wrong word "annulate", I rather meant "annulled". 

For answering your questions:

Relly Coleman wrote: "The only way to avoid the risk of unintented drafting into the army, was for the parents to denounced their Israeli citizenship when their child was still a minor, which resulted in the child losing his.  This was the advise given by the Israeli consulate at the time, which many Israelis followed.  Subsequently, the law was changed so that children born and living outside Israel or who left at a young age, are no longer liable for serving in the IDF. "

This is exactly the case with me. I made a mistake: Our citizenship probably started after 1981. In 1981 there was a terrorist attack in Vienna and after that my mother panicked. I mixed that date up with the event of the thora scrolls buried at the Jewish cemetery (1986/87) in Vienna which was another important event in my family. I am born 1976, btw.

Relly Coleman also wrote: "Why did so many Israelis living abroad denounce their Israeli citizenship"

My mother was utterly afraid of the Jewish heritage. Only after 1981 she thought that we should emigrate to Israel. Years later she got very pissed about Israel and then I think the citizenship was denounced. She was also very displeased when I saw the dark blue passports with the foreign writing from right to left. Austrian passports are dark red. 

I am not looking for citizenship in Israel. If I would, I could undergo conversion as well, which would be the proper thing, I think. No, the basis is a different one: All documents about the heritage of my grandmother are destroyed. But when they tried to gain citizenship they must have filed the documents in. Therefore, I hope that Israel has them somewhere as a copy. The hint with the lawyer is very precious to me. I think only an expert can try to examine all possible means. 

I remember a lot with my grandma and she always hoped that we grandchildren will at least take care.
That is what we are doing now.

Thank you a lot! If anybody got more recommendations, please contact me. I am also happy about more contacts in Israel who know how to deal with a case like mine. I am willing to pay for the work and I am not alone with my request.

Sincerely, may you have a wonderful shabbat. Shabbat Shalom!

Kristina

--
Sincerely, Kristina Pfeifer from Austria

(My given first name is a post-war panic reaction after the survival of my grandma.)


Yehuda Berman
 

Good luck on your search. The documents may also show whether you are Jewish by Jewish law (halacha), regardless of whether she renounced Israeli citizenship. According to Jewish law you are Jewish if your mother was Jewish, whether by birth or conversion. Likewise, she was Jewish if her mother was Jewish, whether by birth or conversion. But Israeli citizenship can also come through a father or grandfather.
Yehuda Berman


Kristina Pfeifer
 

Dear all, 
 
In the last weeks I have found much help in my request and the results are the following:
 
The information about a renounced citizenship in Israel is not available as the request for renouncing is handled in the inner circles of the Ministry of Inner Affairs and then put to rest in a safe way. Also, as this issue had been in the 90's, information extraction is difficult.
 
Maybe, and only maybe, there are archives but these may only be searched based on good will or tremendously urgent matters. As the Ministry of Inner Affairs has surely more important tasks than just such weird requests, it is very unlikely that it will be done. 
 
Nonetheless I am in good spirits because we are successful in finding traces of my grandmother's origins by the other more usual means. The mix of family gossip, historical documents, historical facts and genetics seem to be very promising for triangulation about the probable ancestors. This is particularly due to the science and database progress in the last ten years. Some information is falling well into place. 
 
So, I thank you muchly for helping me along with this weird request and further for the work of everybody on this platform where I will remain for long, I guess, as there is much to do to put the pieces together. 

--
Sincerely, Kristina Pfeifer from Austria

(My given first name is a post-war panic reaction after the survival of my grandma.)