Pro-Palestinian Activists Plan on Gaining Access to Gaza by Flying to Israel

As hundreds of internationals are being denied departure from Greek ports, pro-Palestinian activists from the United States and Europe plan large demonstrations at Ben Gurion International Airport.

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Pro-Palestinian groups say hundreds of activists from around the world intend to fly to Israel's airport on Friday to protest the country's naval blockade of the Gaza Strip and other policies.

By staging large demonstrations at Ben Gurion International Airport, Israeli media say the activists plan on disrupting flights. Media reported that already tight security at the airport will be beefed up. Police refused to comment on operational preparations.

Activists in Athens shout slogans after a news conference regarding preparations of the flotilla due to set sail to Gaza from Greece. June 27, 2011.Credit: Reuters

In a press release, the group of activists said their goal is to physically reach Palestinians in Gaza via Israel. Most of us are frankly a bit scared, said the press release, because of one decision we've all made: to tell the truth that our plan is to visit Palestine.

The activists have been warned they may face probing questioning upon arrival at Ben Gurion Airport, due to their publically stated sympathy with the Palestinians, and say they may be denied entry to Israel for this reason.

The activists expect their own governments to deny them of support in gaining entry to Gaza, should their request to enter be challenged or denied by Israeli authorities.

The groups that called Sunday for the protest are based in Europe and the U.S. ¬They include the International Solidarity Movement, a pro-Palestinian group that often sends activists to the West Bank and Gaza.

They are expected to land at Ben Gurion airport on July 8th.

The planned protests come amid stalled efforts by a flotilla of activists to reach Gaza by sea.

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