pro-palestinian activists at airport_311 reuters.
(photo credit: Ronen Zvulun / Reuters)
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon thanked European
countries on Saturday for helping to limit the number of pro-Palestinian
activists arriving at Ben-Gurion Airport. Ayalon said that "Israel thanks the European countries for their assistance and cooperation in preventing the provocative 'air flotilla' that was planned.""The Immigration department is doing a
good job," he said. "They prevented a few illegal activists from
entering." He continued, "We will take a firm hand against anyone
disregarding [our] laws, and like any other sovereign state we will use
any means at our disposal to prevent people intent on breaking the law
from entering the country."
"Again [Israel] proved that contrary to conventional thought, [it] is not isolated
and is a reputable player in the international community," the deputy foreign
minister added. Ayalon said, "no country would allow a violation of
its sovereignty and laws, not by local law breakers and certainly not
as usual at B-G as police await 'Flightilla'
prepare for arrival of 'air flotilla' activists
On Saturday morning, thirty nine pro-Palestinian activists that arrived at
Ben-Gurion Airport as part of the "air flotilla" were refused entry to
the country and were taken to Ela Prison in Beersheba for questioning .
The Immigration and Population Authority reported that the activists arrived on a Lufthansa flight late Friday night.
On Friday, Interior Minister Eli Yishai commended the Immigration and Population Authority for preventing activists from
entering the country and holding disruptive demonstrations in Ben-Gurion
statements in support of the police and border guards stationed at
Ben-Gurion Airport over the weekend came as police diverted two
passenger aircraft that landed at the airport on
Friday. Security forces detained at least 250 suspected pro-Palestinian
activists for questioning. Participants in
the "Air Flotilla" arrived on at least three other flights as well.
Police Insp.-Gen. Yochanan Danino said officers "succeeded in meeting the mission set by the government." Undercover
agents and police continued to be deployed at the airport as more
"air flotilla" participants were expected to arrive.