Welcome To Palestine Initiative Starts; Israeli police Gear-up

PNN – Palestine News Network – 03.07.11 – 22:39

Bethlehem – PNN – Some 40 Palestinian civil society organizations, popular resistance committees, and political factions announce on Sunday the “Welcome to Palestine” initiative July 8-16 where hundreds of Internationals will work with hundreds of Palestinians for Peace.

ImageAccording to a press release by organizers hundreds of men, women, and children will arrive July 8 at the Israeli Ben Gurion airport and will declare to the Israeli security that they are coming to visit Palestine.

“The international community must recognize the basic human right to receive visitors from abroad and support the right of their own citizens to travel to Palestine without harassment.” Stated the organizers and continued to say “Where Israel works to isolate us, we invite all to join with us openly and proudly. We do not accept the attempts to keep us apart or to force us to speak less than with full honesty.”

Over the past years Israel used deportation and denied entry policies to keep foreigners away from visiting the Palestinian territories as a method to but purser on both local and international NGOs operating in the region that criticizes Israel.

Welcome to Palestine initiative in July comes in a planned series of events and follows similar events carried out in December under the slogan of “ending apartheid and ethnic cleansing.”

According to organizers the week of activities starts on July 9 because that is the anniversary of the International Court of Justice ruling about the illegality of the Settlements and the Israeli built wall surrounding the West Bank. Actions well include Bethlehem, Hebron, Ramallah, Jerusalem and the Jordan Valley.

“ Visitors will be accommodated locally and will enjoy Palestinian hospitality and a program of networking, fellowship, and volunteer peace work in Palestinian towns and villages together with hundreds of local activists” organizers of the camping stated.

On Sunday the Israeli online Ynet said that the Israeli Internal Security and Police have started to prepare to counter the Welcome to Palestine campaign but gave no further details.

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