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EU condemns Israel for deportation of Spanish MEP

The European Union (EU) classified as “deeply disappointing”, this Tuesday (21), Israel’s decision not to allow the entry of Spanish MEP Ana Miranda, who was trying to travel to Palestinian territory.

Miranda even published tweets in Spanish and Galician while still at the Tel Aviv airport to denounce that she had been detained for several hours at the air terminal and that she was waiting for the moment to be expelled.

Other members of the delegation managed to enter Israel, but Miranda was deported to Madrid.

In her messages, the MEP indicated that this refusal was justified by her participation in the so-called “Flotilla of Freedom” in 2015, after the international incident that occurred in the Mediterranean Sea in 2010.

EU diplomatic spokeswoman Nabila Massrali said Miranda’s deportation was “surprising” as her entry into the country was duly authorized by Israeli authorities.

“We regret the decision”, commented Massrali, for whom the gesture was “deeply disappointing”.

“Respect for all elected MEPs and the European Parliament is essential for good relations between the EU and Israel,” she concluded.

Spain’s diplomatic chief, José Manuel Albares, told the Congressional Foreign Relations Committee that the government is “demanding explanations from the Israeli authorities”.

In a note sent to AFP, Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen highlighted the importance of relations with the EU, but confirmed that the MEP is banned from entering the country.

“I have called for a ban on the entry [into the country] of European parliamentarians who have expressed support for terrorist organizations or who have attempted to enter Israel illegally in the past,” the official said in a statement.

The European bloc and Israel resumed joint council meetings that had been suspended for nearly a decade after the country rejected EU criticism of West Bank settlements, which are illegal under international law.

However, the return of Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister at the head of the most right-wing government in Israel’s history has dimmed hopes for an improvement in bilateral relations with the EU.

This post is also available in: Português

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