‘Flytilla’ activists who do manage to get to Israel say they are intent on causing as much trouble as they can.
JPOST Two European airlines, Jet2.com and Lufthansa airlines, canceled the air tickets of pro-Palestinian activists on Friday. Jet2.com emailed three Manchester women who had intended on participating in the “flytilla” that their tickets were null, and that no refund was available, the Guardian reported Friday.
Israel told European countries it was aware of pro-Palestinian activists who are intent on causing disturbances if they touch down in Israel as part of the ‘flytilla’ on Sunday, Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch said Saturday evening.
Speaking of communications between Israel and foreign governments and airlines, which included an Israeli transfer of names on a no-fly blacklist, Aharonovitch said, “We’ve asked them not to allow boarding for those who were identified by us. They acted pretty much accordingly.”
The public security minister, who has ministerial responsibility for Israel’s response to the attempt by large numbers of pro-Palestinian activists to touch down in Israel, said a passenger plane with activists could land in Israel as early as Saturday night. “We’ve started initial preparations tonight,” he said on Saturday. “Tomorrow is the main day… clear instructions have been given to the police, the interior minister… to prevent provocations and not allow disturbances at Ben Gurion Airport,” he added.
Those who manage to circumvent no-fly lists and land at the airport, and who have been identified by Israel as provocateurs, will be “isolated from the central airport,” Aharonioitch said. Activists who get past all of Israel’s measures “will be arrested if they cause disturbances,” he added.
Hundreds of unarmed police officers will guard the airport on Sunday, as anywhere between 500 to 1000 activists try to land in Israel, according to police estimates. Sunday is expected to be one of Israel’s busiest air travel days, with some 45,000 passengers landing and taking off from Ben Gurion.
The video below is from Iranian Press TV
Exhibiting the best of ‘Jewish’ humor, Israel will present activists who do arrive at Ben-Gurion Airport with a ‘Thank You’ letter:
JPOST Pro-Palestinian activists arriving Sunday at Ben-Gurion Airport as part of the anti- Israel fly-in dubbed the “flytilla” will be greeted with a sarcastic letter noting that while they could have chosen to protest the brutality in Syria, Iran and Gaza, they opted instead to protest against the “Middle East’s sole democracy.”
“Dear activist,” starts the letter that will be translated into a number of different languages for the participants in an event formally being called “Welcome to Palestine.”
“We appreciate your choosing to make Israel the object of your humanitarian concerns,” the letter continues.
“We know there were many other worthy choices.”
Israel plans to bar entry by some 2,000 activists from at least 15 different countries, mostly in Europe, either by preventing them from boarding their flights or by deporting them once they arrive.
The activists want to draw attention to Israel’s practice of barring foreigners it believes could cause trouble by engaging in pro-Palestinian activities during their visit.
The letter – drawn up in the Prime Minister’s Office – noted, that the activists “could have chosen to protest the Syrian regime’s daily savagery against its own people, which has claimed thousands of lives.”
Alternatively, they could have chosen to protest “the Iranian regime’s brutal crackdown on dissent and support of terrorism throughout the world.” Or, if they simply had to come to this part of the globe, they “could have chosen to protest Hamas rule in Gaza, where terror organizations commit a double war crime by firing rockets at civilians and hiding behind civilians.”
Instead, “you chose to protest against Israel, the Middle East’s sole democracy, where women are equal, the press criticizes the government, human rights organizations can operate freely, religious freedom is protected for all and minorities do not live in fear.”
The letter concludes with a suggestion that the activists first solve “the real problems of the region” and then “come back and share with us your experience.”
In an indication that Israel will not let the protesters in but will instead deport them back to their countries of origin, the letter ends with the line: “Have a nice flight.”