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Edelstein: Israel Ready for Any Scenario in Pro-Arab Fly-In

As Israel prepares for Friday’s ‘fly in’ to Ben Gurion Airport, Minister Edelstein says Israel is prepared for any scenario.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 7/5/2011, 3:03 AM / Last Update: 7/5/2011, 9:01 AM

Yoni Kempinski

As Israel prepares for Friday’s ‘fly in’ to the Ben Gurion Airport by pro-Arab organizations, Minister of Information and Diaspora Yuli Edelstein says that Israel is prepared for any scenario.

Speaking on Monday with Arutz Sheva’s Hebrew language news service, Edelstein said the scenario of refugees landing in Israel’s airport was already discussed by senior Israeli officials six months ago, in order to ensure Israel would handle such a situation in the right manner.

He noted that the planned aerial protest has a public relations advantage for Israel over the flotilla, because an arrival en masse of Arabs to the Ben Gurion Airport would show the world that the true Arab ambition does not end in Gaza or in Judea and Samaria, but is rather the actual destruction of the entire State of Israel.

Edelstein added, however, that Israel must keep its eyes open, since it is clear that the fly-in will not end simply by the protesters holding up protest signs.

“They have proven that they will not be satisfied holding up a sign which reads ‘Free Palestine’ and leaving,” he said. “They have proven that they are really crazy and therefore we need to watch out."

Addressing the possibility that the arrival in Israel of several dozen PA Arabs and their supporters would be a real security risk, Edelstein said that he is aware of this possibility. He reminded that the planes involved in the September 11 terror attacks were kidnapped by terrorists who were not using explosive devices, a fact that which teaches Israel about the need to keep its eyes open in regards to issues of security.

Pro-PA activists have announced their plans to arrive by the hundreds at Ben Gurion Airport on Friday “to protest against Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip.”

It was reported on Monday that Israel was making intense preparations for the fly-in, and that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu had ordered Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch to coordinate all law enforcement and aviation authorities.