Members of 18 global organizations that promote a boycott campaign of Israel, known collectively as the BDS movement, will be banned from entering the country, according to a list published Sunday by the Ministry of Strategic Affairs.
The legislation denies permits and residency visas to anyone who has publicly called for a boycott of the country.
"No country would allow visitors who arrive to harm the country to enter it and certainly not when their goal is to wipe out Israel as a Jewish country", said Erdan.
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Diker told World Israel News (WIN) that the list published by Erdan is "a well thought out minimalist list that includes the worst of the worst BDS groups in the world". The Israeli NGOs produced numerous studies on BDS activities, and eventually the government began taking the issue seriously before launching a plan of action. His strategic affairs ministry has a budget of around $36 million to make counter-plan to tackle the BDS movement. The leaders of those groups will not be allowed to enter Israel.
"As someone with considerable family in Israel, this policy will be a personal hardship". Most recently, pop singer Lorde joined a number of other performers who have canceled performances in Israel amid pressure from BDS activists. "But I am also heartened by this indicator of the BDS movement's growing strength, and hope that it will bring the day closer when just as I go to visit my friends and family in Israel, so will Palestinian friends and colleagues be able to return home", Vilkomerson said in the statement.
Interior Minister Aryeh Deri denounced BDS for "trying to exploit the law and our hospitality in order to act against Israel and to defame the country". The following organisations from the United States also fall on the list- AFSC (American Friends Service Committee), AMP (American Muslims for Palestine), Code Pink, JVP (Jewish Voice for Peace), NSJP (National Students for Justice in Palestine), USCPR (US Campaign for Palestinian Rights) and BNC (BDS National Committee).
According to reports a year ago, Hugh Lanning of PSC became the first British citizen to be refused entry to Israel under the law.
"It really shows how vague this idea of BDS is". "Israel sees this as a deterrent, but I think that people will be even more dedicated to the cause".