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1ST LEAD Israel rejects appeal of US student barred over boycott stance By Eliyahu Kamisher, dpa

By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Tel Aviv (dpa) - An Israeli court on Friday rejected the second appeal of a detained US student who was barred from entering the country over her alleged support for boycotts of Israel.

Lara Alqasem, 22, who is of Palestinian descent, has remained in a detention centre for ten days pending the appeal. She attempted to enter Israel to start a graduate programme, but her student visa was revoked and she was barred from entering the country due a past affiliation with a student group that advocates boycotts of Israel.

Judge Erez Yakual ruled that the government was within its authority to bar her entry.

Alqasem is able to submit an appeal to the Supreme Court, but she has not made a decision on whether to do so, her lawyer Yotam Ben-Hillel said.

Barring an appeal, she is scheduled to leave the country on Sunday, an Immigration Authority spokeswoman said.

Israel passed a law last year allowing the Interior Ministry to deny entry to foreign nations who have called for boycotts of the predominantly Jewish state.

On Thursday, Ben-Hillel said Alqasem had not been active in the boycott group - called Students for Justice in Palestine - for over a year and thus should not have her visa revoked on those grounds.

Alqasem said she no longer supports boycotting Israel.

The case was the first major legal test of the right-wing Israeli government‘s attempt to ban activists affiliated with Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS), the international movement to boycott Israel.

BDS says it seeks an economic and cultural boycott of what it calls Israel‘s "entire regime of oppression" in the name of Palestinian human rights. Israel accuses the movement of anti-Semitism and seeking an end to the state by promoting the return of Palestinian refugees.


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(19.11.2018 21:26)

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