The Interior Ministry on Tuesday prevented the entry into Israel of the mayor of Dublin, the capital of Ireland, Mícheál MacDonncha.
The Ministry of Strategic Affairs, which is responsible for formulating recommendations to the Interior Ministry, says that MacDonncha’s entry into Israel was prevented due to his consistent activity in promoting boycotts against Israel, in cooperation with one of the most radical boycott organizations in the world: The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC).
The IPSC promotes boycotts of Israel in almost every possible area, from the Israeli diamond industry to agricultural produce. The organization provides its supporters with a guide to identifying products from Israel, and calls on them not only to avoid their consumption, but also to remove them from store shelves in Ireland.
The organization calls for boycotts of products of Israeli and international companies operating in Israel, and works with Irish government officials to stop the arms trade with Israel and to impose an embargo on Israel in this field. The organization is also active in encouraging a cultural boycott against Israel.
The Ministry of Strategic Affairs pointed out several examples of MacDonncha’s anti-Israel activities in recent years:
On Monday, Dublin's city council adopted a resolution adopting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) principles against the HP company.
In December of 2017, MacDonncha participated as a speaker in a demonstration organized by IPSC outside the U.S. Embassy in Ireland following President Trump's declaration recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. At this demonstration, the U.S. Embassy was given a letter containing a statement calling for it to join the BDS campaign and boycott Israel.
On April 1, 2018, he shared on his Facebook page a call for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador to Ireland.
In late 2017, MacDonncha launched a campaign at a festive event produced by the IPSC.
The Ministry of Strategic Affairs said that following a discussion on the subject and consultation with the Foreign Ministry, and after taking into account all the considerations in accordance with the amendment to the Prevention of Entry into Israel Law, it was decided to recommend to the Interior Ministry that the mayor be prohibited entry into Israel. This decision was adopted by Interior Minister Aryeh Deri and his office.
Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) said that "anyone who acts to boycott the State of Israel will not enter the country - let alone in the case of someone who has an official position and cooperates with extremist boycott organizations. The rules of the game have changed and the State of Israel will not remain silent in the face of attempts to boycott and harm it.”
IPSC is included in a government list of anti-Israel organizations backing the BDS movement whose activists will not be allowed to enter Israel.
Earlier this year, Israel’s government approved a plan which will set aside $72 million to fighting the campaign to boycott it.
The plan, which would entail the largest monetary investment yet by Israel specifically toward combating the BDS campaign, calls for setting up a not-for-profit organization whose board will be made up of government officials and donors from abroad, the report said.