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Dual Citizenship Subjects American Citizen to Draft in Israeli Army

An Israel army spokesman said here today that the Army’s effort to induct an Israeli born American citizen was “perfectly legal” because he had dual nationality. The spokesman made the statement in comment on a report that the parents of Samuel Cohen, 27, a Chicago Hebrew school principal, had protested to the United States State Department against Cohen’s induction.

Rabbi Meshulam Cohen, father of the inductee, said in the United States that his son left for Israel on June 30 to study Israeli teaching methods, and that he was scheduled to return to the United States for his new job as principal of B’nai Sholom School in Chicago. The father said his sone became a naturalized American citizen, after being brought to the United States in 1951.

The Israeli Army spokesman said that Cohen became an American citizen without renouncing his Israeli citizenship, had not served in the army, and was therefore subject to military service. The spokesman said that Cohen refused to appear for pre-induction medical examination and will be charged on that count. His case is being appealed, and he is free pending trial for draft evasion, but he cannot leave Israel, the spokesman added. An American Embassy spokesman here said Cohen would not lose his American citizenship if he joined the Israeli army under protest and notifies the Embassy to that effect.

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