Jordan bars international activists from leaving for West Bank

free palistaineJordanian authorities have barred international activists from going to Israel-occupied West Bank and delivering humanitarian aid to Palestinian students suffering under the occupation.

“Two buses, carrying 100 activists, were not allowed to leave the Jordanian side” of Allenby Bridge Crossing between the West Bank and Jordan, Walid Atallah, a spokesman for the Welcome to Palestine campaign in Jordan, told AFP on Sunday.

“The Jordanian authorities stamped their passports and charged them fees and everything was okay. When the buses left, the last checkpoint on the Jordanian side was closed. No reason was given,” he added.

The activists, who are from the United States as well as several European states, have brought along tons of toys, pens, notebooks, and other supplies for the students.

After they were denied entry, the activists held a demonstration near the checkpoint and chanted, “Free Palestine!”

“This was deliberate. Jordan did not want Israel to be held responsible for denying the activists entry,” Atallah stated.

“This is our fourth initiative to enter Palestine,” Olivia Zemor, spokeswoman for the group, said in Amman before leaving for the Allenby Bridge Crossing, about 35 kilometers southeast of the Jordanian capital.

“We have around 100 participants, from France, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, the United States, aged between 10 and 50. All kinds of people, from all backgrounds and religions. They are all motivated to visit Palestine,” she added.

The peace activists also tried to enter the West Bank through Israel in July 2011 and April 2012, but was stopped by Tel Aviv.

Israel occupied East al-Quds (Jerusalem) and the West Bank in 1967 and later annexed both territories. The international community has refused to recognize either move.


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