Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

This tourist hotspot is banning Israelis over the war in Gaza

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun7,2024
The Indian Ocean nation of the Maldives will ban Israelis from the luxury tourist hotspot, announcing a national rally in “solidarity with Palestine”.
The Maldives, a tiny Islamic republic of more than 1,000 strategically located coral islets, is known for its secluded sandy white beaches, shallow turquoise lagoons and Robinson Crusoe-style getaways.
President Mohamed Muizzu has “resolved to impose a ban on Israeli passports,” a spokesperson for his office said in a statement on Sunday, without detailing when the new law would take effect.

He also announced a national fundraising campaign called Maldivians in Solidarity with Palestine.

A man in a white shirt sits at a desk

Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu will appoint a special envoy to launch a fundraising campaign for Palestinians suffering from the war in Gaza. Credit: Supplied/Maldives government

The Maldives had lifted a previous ban on Israeli tourists in the early 1990s and moved to restore relations in 2010.

However, normalisation attempts were scuttled following the toppling of former president Mohamed Nasheed in February 2012.
Opposition parties and government allies in the Maldives have been putting pressure on Muizzu to ban Israelis, as a protest against the war in Gaza.

Official data showed the number of Israelis visiting the Maldives dropped to 528 in the first four months of this year, down 88 per cent compared to the corresponding period last year.

In response to the ban, an Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson urged citizens to avoid travel to the Maldives.
“For Israeli citizens staying in the country, it is recommended to consider leaving, since if they fall into distress for any reason, it will be difficult for us to help,” the spokesman added.
Israel has bombarded Gaza since Hamas’ 7 October attack in which more than 1,200 people were killed and over 200 hostages taken, according to the Israeli government. More than 36,000 people have been killed in Gaza since 7 October, according to the health ministry in Gaza.

The 7 October attack was a significant escalation in the long-standing conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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