January 11, Ben Gurion Airport — Israel has stopped one Swedish and one Danish human rights activist from entering the country through Ben Gurion Airport.
On Sunday morning, Andreas Kaivarainen and Fie Knutsenwere were taken for questioning. Israeli authorities insisted that the individuals post $5,000 as a guarantee that they would not engage in political activities. When the activists insisted they could not pay the bail, Israeli authorities contacted the Swedish and Danish embassies. The embassies were told by Israel that the activists were trying to get into Gaza.
However impossible it is to enter Gaza due to the ongoing siege, the Israeli government is taking extreme measures to ensure that journalists and activists do not have access to Gaza. Although these two activists have never been to Israel/Palestine, the Israeli authorities are erroneously claiming that they have intentions to enter Gaza. Even though denying the activists entry is unwarranted, Israeli authorities are currently holding the internationals in a detention facility near the airport. They are refusing deportation and insisting that the reason for their denial of entry is misleading.
Israel is so intent on forcefully preventing international observers from entering Gaza that they stopped two internationals with no route to enter Gaza. Due to the ongoing siege, internationals have only been able to enter Gaza with the Free Gaza Movement’s boat, the SS Dignity. The last attempt by the FGM was violently stopped when the Israeli navy rammed into the SS Dignity.
Fie Knutsenwere was deported at 4am on the 12th January.