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June 10, 2015 1:22 pm

Knesset Member Introduces Bill Banning BDS Supporters From Entering Israel

avatar by Ben Niran / Tazpit News Agency

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The Knesset. Photo: Wiki Commons.

The Knesset. Photo: Wiki Commons.

A member of Israel’s Knesset has introduced a bill prohibiting foreign citizens who call for a boycott of Israel from entering the country.

The bill, proposed by MK Yinon Magal (Jewish Home), aims to prevent foreign activists from agitating against Israel from inside its own territory, and comes against the backdrop of an upsurge in international movements seeking to isolate the Jewish state.

“The past years have seen an increase in the frequency of calls to boycott Israel; the issue is on the public agenda” Magal’s spokesman, Yochai Nadiv, told Tazpit News Agency, alluding to recent incidents such as the statements made by Orange CEO Stephane Richard last week regarding his intention to sever ties with an Israeli mobile service provider.

According to Nadiv, the bill aims to serve as a means of defense against this phenomenon, which its text refers to as a “new front in a war against Israel.”

“Many foreign organizations not only call for a boycott, but come to the territories, agitate against Israel, then return home to spread their message abroad. It’s absurd: you let in people who wish to harm the country,” Nadiv explained, adding that similar laws already exist in several countries, including France, which prosecutes foreigners accused of anti-government agitation.

The bill, currently at the signing stage, is expected to be presented to the Knesset plenum for an initial vote next week.

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