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‘Flytilla’ for Palestine hit by arrests as Israel clamps down

Al Akhbar | April 15, 2012

Dozens of activists were detained as they flew into Israel on Sunday, as part of a protest to highlight the continued oppression of Palestinians.

Hundreds more were prevented from flying by airlines working in conjunction with the Jewish state, being stopped while boarding in countries including Britain, France, Switzerland and Turkey.

Reports on Sunday morning also said right-wing Jewish settler groups had appeared at airports in a counter protest, sparking fears of confrontation.

Over a thousand people had bought tickets to fly to Israel as part of Welcome to Palestine 2012’s ‘Flytilla’ campaign, according to event organizers.

However it appeared on Sunday morning that the majority had been prevented from boarding, with others arrested on arrival in Ben Gurion airport.

Activists condemned international airlines and countries for preventing them from boarding, with many threatening to take legal action over the cancelled flights.

Particular fury was vented at Turkey, which worked in conjunction with Israel to prevent activists boarding flights despite claiming to support the Palestinian struggle.

Spokesman for the event Diana Alzeer said three people had reached the country and travelled to Bethlehem.

Event organizers said the protest aimed to show how Palestine had become a “prison.”

“There is no way into Palestine other than through Israeli control points. Israel has turned Palestine into a giant prison, but prisoners have a right to receive visitors,” the Palestine Justice Network said.

“Welcome to Palestine 2012 will again challenge Israel’s policy of isolating the West Bank while the settler paramilitaries and army commit brutal crimes against a virtually defenceless Palestinian civilian population.”

Israel continues to deny Palestinians equal rights and restricts their freedom of movement.

The country maintains a siege of Gaza and continues to occupy the West Bank while encouraging the rapid development of Jewish-only settlements, which have been declared illegal by the UN.

April 15, 2012 - Posted by | Civil Liberties, Illegal Occupation, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , ,

7 Comments

  1. Like it or not, Israel is a sovereign nation and it alone decides who may enter Israel and who may not enter… Go to the US, UK or EU (and, indeed, ANY country) as a non citizen and you may be sent back if you can’t prove you have sufficient funds (cash, traveler checks, credit cards etc) for your stay…

    As for visiting the “Palestinian territories”, let these people fly to Egypt and enter Gaza from there… As for Judea & Samaria (a.k.a. the “West Bank”), anybody visiting them can enter from Jordan…

    Let’s face it, just life the flotilla to Gaza, these people aren’t for a resolution of the problem that includes an independent Israel… If I were Israel I’d keep these people away too…

    Like

    Comment by King Edward | April 15, 2012

    • “Anybody can enter” the West Bank. Right. Sure, as long as they have the weapons to annihilate the Israelis at the Allenby crossing.

      K.E. you are an apologist for those who are imprisoning an entire population based on race. You are disgusting.

      Like

      Comment by aletho | April 15, 2012

      • Palestinian isn’t a race and the flytilla activists are predominantly European so race has got nothing to do with anything… Other then spouting a personal attack…

        As for the Alenby crossing, I guess that you’re unaware of the fact that several tens of activists were allowed (no weapons were required) to enter Judea & Samaria (a.k.a. the “West Bank”)…

        Obviously you’re disconnected with reality preferring to imagine a reality that is non existent… I guess it would be too much to expect an apology as propagandists like yourself don’t “do” apologies…

        Like

        Comment by King Edward | April 15, 2012

        • K.E.

          Are you idiotic enough to claim that visitors have free access to the West Bank from Jordan?

          Bizarre.

          Your ilk of racist is the very most despicable.

          Like

          Comment by aletho | April 15, 2012

          • Free access?!… Where did I state that it was “free”?!… Nice job of creating a strawman argument…

            The fact remains that it is NOT necessary (though it might be the most convenient) to go via Israel when one wishes to visit the “Palestinian territories” of Gaza and/or Judea & Samaria (a.k.a. the “West Bank”)…

            These people who insisted doing so through Israel had another goal and Israel was right (from its point of view) in refusing them entry…

            As for allegations of racism, you know nothing about me other then that we disagree on certain issues… Personally I don’t believe in the whole concept of “race”… There is only one race on planet Earth: the human race…

            Furthermore, as I’m European and my wife is Asian the suggestion that I’m a racist is ludicrous!… But then again, you probably use words like “racist” and “Zionist” as personal insults…

            Like

            Comment by King Edward | April 15, 2012

            • K.E.,

              If you insist that you “know nothing about race” then you are simply a participant in a crime syndicate. Zionism is nothing more than organized crime.

              Like

              Comment by aletho | April 16, 2012

              • Once again you chose to use words that I don’t use and thereby imply things that I haven’t posted… Of course I know of the concept of race… As for Zionism, you’re entitled to your view and I’m entitled to disagree with your view… Just as you’re entitled to disagree with my view on this (and any other) subject…

                Just because it’s your view doesn’t mean that it’s the truth… Of course, that applies equally to my views… However, the fact that you have to resort to lies and half truths in order to substantiate your view means that my view is probably closer to the truth then yours…

                Like

                Comment by King Edward | April 16, 2012


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