British Peace activist refused entry to Palestine

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Here’s a solid example of the sort of daily violations that take place every day at the hands of the Israeli Defense Forces.

This story wouldn’t be considered newsworthy in a major publication but appeared in the ‘Lancashire Evening Post’ because it concerned a local.


Peace activist refused entry to Palestine

A Preston man who was arrested while working as a peace activist in Israel has been denied entry into Palestine.

Gordon Bennett, 43, said he was kicked, punched and strangled by Israeli troops while recording human rights violations against Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied Palestinian Territories last September.

He was arrested with two other British citizens, an American and two Palestinian men, in the village of Kufr Qaddoum.

The Amnesty International worker said he was threatened by his captors that he would be raped in prison during a 36-hour ordeal, before being taken to a midnight court hearing where he was accused of throwing stones at soldiers.

He was placed under house arrest in Tel Aviv for a week, before being released without charge in October.

The ex-Preston College student, who vowed to continue his work after the ordeal, left Israel and travelled to Thailand via Egypt at the end of last year.

On Sunday, February 3, he tried to re-enter Palestine via the Allenby Bridge crossing from Jordan, but was turned away by security officials and has his British Passport endorsed so he cannot go back to Israel or Palestine.

He said: “After lengthy questioning by Israeli Immigration, who control the border, I was refused entry.

“I was then sent immediately back to Jordan. The Jordanian officials had clearly seen this happen many times before.

“Israel does not want people to see what it is doing in the West Bank, and puts a lot of effort into trying to keep out international observers.

“As the bus driver who took me back to Jordan said, ‘Israel doesn’t like Palestinians, and doesn’t like people who like Palestinians’.”

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