OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- The Israeli Interior Ministry has blocked hundreds of foreign activists from boarding planes in Europe and arrested dozens who managed to reach the occupied territories on Friday.
Israeli media reported that police arrested some 120 activists moments upon their arrival at Ben-Gurion international airport. The activists were planning to show solidarity with the Palestinians in their struggle against Israel's policies and practices. They have been transferred to the Ramle and Beersheba prisons until the time they will be deported from Tel Aviv.
The sources said Israel sent a black-list of activists' names to international airports and thereby blocked some 200 activists from boarding the planes.
Meanwhile, activists banned from flight in Paris have been sitting in at Charles de Gaulle airport to condemn what they labeled Israel's “control” of the French airport.
Israeli forces have also tightened procedures at West Bank checkpoints in search of pro-Palestinian activists who slipped past tight security at Ben-Gurion airport. Police said the state of alert at the airport would continue over the next few days to repel “irregular emergencies” that could take place.
According to police data, anywhere from 350-500 people were refused travel by airports and airlines in their countries.
Israeli police also said two planes landed at an alternate terminal for security reasons.
The activists' influx to the West Bank was timed to coincide with the seventh anniversary of a ruling by the International Court of Justice in the Hague condemning the separation wall in the Palestinian territories as illegal.
The program involved tours of Palestinian villages and the reclamation of farmlands. In addition, activists wanted to study the effects the wall has had on Palestinian cities and towns.