- Published on Monday, 16 April 2012 12:39
On Sunday, The Israeli Security Service Shin Bet, blacklisted over 1000 people from entering Israel, a vast amount without any evidence of them being activists as part of the 'Welcome to Palestine' flytilla.
The blacklists, which were mainly sourced from social networking sites, included Israeli's, who were sent an email stating that they would not be allowed to fly in to the country on Sunday. Moreover it included a French diplomat and his wife and an employee from Italy's Ministry of Communication.
According to Israeli online newspaper, Haaretz, forty percent of the names that appeared on the black-list were added, "despite the fact that the security service had no concrete information showing they were connected with the protest in any way."
In the previous week, Israel has issued airlines with a list of blacklisted passengers names, and threatened to take legal measures against them if they allow them to board planes to Israel. All airlines were told they would have to pay for the return flight for any people who were blacklisted and turned away at the border.
The flight companies, which are mainly European, included Jet2.com, a British airline, which bowed to pressure by not allowing a British citizen to board the plane and refused to refund the ticket.
This also prompted mass protests in airports around Europe, as Lufthansa and Swiss airlines cancelled Israel bound flights.
As part of 'Welcome to Palestine', 1,200 people planned to fly in to Ben Guiron airport to visit Bethlehem for Easter celebrations and to protest against Israel's continued violations of the Palestinian population.
More than 40 people were arrested at the airport for attempting to fly in and the organizers of 'Welcome to Palestine' have threatened legal action against all airlines who refused to fly activists to Israel.