Both Security and Justice

for Palestinians as well as Israelis

Freedom of Movement [Wikipedia URL]

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Freedom of movement, mobility rights or the right to travel is a human rights concept that the constitutions of numerous states respect. It asserts that a citizen of a state in which that citizen is present has the liberty to travel, reside in, and/or work in any part of the state where one pleases within the limits of respect for the liberty and rights of others,[1] and to leave that state and return at any time. Some immigrants' rights advocates assert that human beings have a fundamental human right to mobility not only within a state but between states.


Common limitations

Nevertheless, restrictions on international freedom of movement (immigration or emigration) are commonplace. Within countries, freedom of movement is often more limited for minors, and penal law can modify this right as it applies to persons charged with or convicted of crimes (for instance, parole, probation, registration). In some countries, freedom of movement has historically been limited for women, and for members of disfavored racial and social groups. Circumstances, both legal and practical, may operate to limit this freedom. For example, a nation that is generally permissive with respect to travel may restrict that right during time of war. In some instances, the laws of a nation may assert a guarantee of this right, but lawless conditions may make unfettered movement impossible. In other instances, a nation whose written laws codify such rights may fail to actually provide them. Other common political-legal restrictions on freedom of movement are:

  • national and regional official minimum wage tariff barriers to labour market entry (free movement or migration of workers);
  • official identity cards (internal passports, citizenship licenses) that must be carried and produced on demand;
  • obligations on persons to register change of address or partner with the state authorities;
  • protectionist local-regional barriers to housebuilding and therefore settlement in particular districts; and
  • road toll barriers to the free movement of persons by motor cars.

Philosophical grounds for a right to move

Scholars have attempted to base a universal "right to move" on several philosophical grounds, including the idea of a common ownership of the earth, a natural right of movement existing prior to the advent of nation states, an ethics of cosmopolitanism, and utilitarian notions of the benefits of immigration to both receiving countries and immigrants.[2]


Wikipedia URL


See also Chicago Hearing video #1 entitled Freedom of Movement