Ending Week-long Saga, Dublin's Lord Mayor Promises to Ask Israel for Permission for Future Visits

In video, Dublin's Mac Donncha can be seen being asked to sign a document vowing to inform Israel next time he plans to come – after typo allowed him to enter Israel unnoticed despite being barred

Dublin Mayor Micheal Mac Donncha speaks in a conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Wednesday, April 11, 2018. Israeli authorities are investigating how Donncha arrived in the country despite instructions to bar his entry. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
Majdi Mohammed/AP

Israel's immigration officials got the lord mayor of Dublin to sign Friday a document vowing to inform them next time he plans to visit Israel, bringing to an end a week-long saga that saw the Irish official enter Israel, despite being banned, due to a typo.

In video, filmed at Israel's Ben Gurion Airport, Dublin Lord Mayor Mícheál Mac Donncha can be seen being politely asked to sign a document promising to inform Israeli authorities the next time he plans to enter the country.

The document he signed states that he was "informed... that should I wish to enter Israel I am required to request permission" and that he is "aware that if I do not act accordingly my entry to Israel may be refused."

Israel's Foreign Ministry summoned Ireland's Ambassador to Israel Alison Kelly to its office on Thursday after the lord mayor participated in a conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ripped into him for the event.

On his official Facebook page, Netanyahu wrote "I have one message for the mayor: You should be ashamed of yourself," adding "evidence published" in his book on the Mufti's collaboration with the Nazis during the Holocaust, in reference to images of Haj Amin al-Husseini which were reportedly featured at the West Bank conference. 

Israel's anger stemmed from an April decision by the Irish city to support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement and Donncha support for calls to expel Israel's ambassador to Ireland. 

The Foreign Ministry claimed the ambassador was summoned over Donncha participation in the conference as well as what it described as two hostile decisions against Israel this week by the Dublin city council.

The deputy director of the Foreign Ministry's Europe department Rodica Radian-Gordon expressed her "astonishment and deep disappointment" that the mayor chose to participate in a "blatantly anti-Israel event." She added that this was "especially disturbing" because this week Israel commemorates Holocaust Remembrance Day. 

"The Israeli government expects an official public response from Ireland with regard to the conduct of both the Dublin city council and the Dublin mayor,  who are waging a campaign of discrimination and hatred against the State of Israel," she added.

On Tuesday, the Dublin mayor was barred from entering the county while he was already in Ramallah after having flown in through Tel Aviv.

The Interior Ministry later admitted Mac Donncha had entered Israel due to a typo. The announcement, by both the interior and the strategic affairs ministries, said Mac Donncha would be denied entry to Israel over his ties to BDS.

In January, Israel summoned the Irish ambassador in Israel for clarification and to express dissatisfaction in light of a proposed bill in Ireland's national parliament calling for a boycott of Israeli settlements.

Ambassador Kelly said then that her government opposed the legislation, which was subsequently postponed.