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Apr 9, 2014

Gazan runner denied travel rights to Bethlehem Marathon

Everyone is abuzz about the Gazan marathon runner, Nader Masri, who was denied travel permits by Israel to go to the Bethlehem Marathon.

Personally, I feel bad for the guy. I understand it can be disappointing to not be able to participate in a big event just because of a technical problem.

However, I would not get all worked up about it. After all, when I asked about participating in the Bethlehem Marathon last year, the Palestinian organizers said no, I would not be allowed to.

This year I asked again. This time they did not even bother responding to my 3 queries.

So, if they are going to deny me the ability to participate, I might feel bad for this Gazan runner, but I don't see the big deal. Turns out he is nothgin special - I was denied just like he was denied.


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10 comments:

  1. The difference is that you can participate in the Tel-Aviv, Jerusalem, and probably many other marathons, and he probably cannot.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. and he can participate in the marathons in Beirut, Saudi Arabia, Dubai, and others that I cannot participate in, as well as the many others he can participate in just like anybody else.. such as New York, Amsterdam, Madrid, South Africa, London, Chicago, San Diego, and hundreds of others.

      Delete
  2. Happens all over. A few years back I was denied entry to one of the Emirates for an "international" emergency medicine conference. Seems "international" doesn't include Israeli citizens.

    ReplyDelete
  3. First of all, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem are a short drive from your home, while Saudi Arabia and Beirut may be inaccessable to him. Second of all, it is nonsense like this that has a very negative impact on the day to day life of your average Palestinian. Israel would do much better bending over backwards to accomodate these types of requests, assuming there is no real security issue.

    ReplyDelete
  4. 1. I would note that last year there was also a gaza marathon I asked about participating in and my request was denied (also note the marathon was canceled at the last minute because Hamas objected to female participation).

    2. I dont disagree with your statement, and would have had no problem if Israel had allowed him to travel to run. I just dont consider it a humanitarian crisis that Israel chose not to allow it.

    3. Why didnt Israel bend over backwards to allow it? I dont know. but things like this are especially prone to happen when peace talks are torpedoed (we can argue about who is to blame, but thats not my point - with the peace process freshly on hold, goodwill gestures are going to be hard to come by in the near future)


    ReplyDelete
  5. What do you mean? Why should the organizer refuse a runner? Would he not want the most runners for the event?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. technically it is illegal for Palestinians to enter Israel and it is illegal for Israels to enter Palestinian territory. one can apply for permits, but they generally only get granted for very good reasons, not whimsical things.

      there are also safety issues involved. is it safe for an israeli to be in Palestinian territory? I personally might be more concerned or less concerned, but the organizers do have to take into account security issues and can say we are not equipped to deal with that safety issue.

      Delete
  6. he is applying to the supreme court.

    rafi, next time you are refused apply to the palestinian supreme court. i mean, its not like you are a settler.

    http://gisha.org/updates/2781

    ReplyDelete
  7. What do you mean? Why should the organizer refuse a runner? Would he not want the most runners for the event?

    ReplyDelete
  8. as I wrote above..
    technically it is illegal for Palestinians to enter Israel and it is illegal for Israels to enter Palestinian territory. one can apply for permits, but they generally only get granted for very good reasons, not whimsical things.

    there are also safety issues involved. is it safe for an israeli to be in Palestinian territory? I personally might be more concerned or less concerned, but the organizers do have to take into account security issues and can say we are not equipped to deal with that safety issue.

    ReplyDelete

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