Palestinian-American student denied entry into Israel despite getting visa

Date: 
October, 2018
Country: 
Israel

In a groundbreaking case, Israel has detained an American graduate student at its international airport for the past week, accusing her of supporting a Palestinian-led boycott campaign against the Jewish state.

The case highlights Israel's concerns about the boycott movement and the great efforts it has made to stop it. 

The grassroots campaign has made significant inroads in recent years, particularly among university students and millennials.

Lara Alqasem, a 22-year-old U.S. citizen with Palestinian grandparents, landed at Ben-Gurion Airport last Tuesday with a valid student visa. 

But she was barred from entering the country and ordered deported, based on suspicions she is a boycott supporter.

In the meantime, she has been spending her days in a closed area with little access to a telephone, no internet and a bed that was infested with bedbugs, according to people who have spoken to her.

On October 9, Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan floated a possible compromise, saying in a radio interview that he would rethink his decision to expel her if she apologizes and renounces her support for BDS.

Source: Daily Mail