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The Maldives bans Israeli tourists from entering because of Gaza

Maldives

The Maldives has announced an entry ban for Israeli passport holders, reacting to public anger over the war in Gaza.

The Maldives has announced an entry ban for Israeli passport holders, reacting to public anger over the war in Gaza.

The government of the Maldives, the popular tourist destination in the Indian Ocean archipelago known for its white-sand beaches and luxury resorts, will ban entry to Israeli passport holders as public anger in the predominantly Muslim nation grows over the war in Gaza.

The island nation’s president Mohamed Muizzu has “decided to impose an entry ban on Israeli passports,” a spokesman for his office said in a statement, without elaborating on when the new law would take effect.

Muizzu also announced a national fundraising campaign titled “Maldives in Solidarity with Palestine”. Nearly 11,000 Israelis visited the Maldives last year, accounting for 0.6% of total tourist arrivals. Official figures also show that the number of Israelis visiting the Maldives was just 528 in the first four months of this year, down 88% compared to the same period last year.

Opposition parties and government allies in the Maldives are pressuring Muizzu to ban the Israelis in protest against the Gaza war.

The Maldives had lifted its previous ban on Israeli tourists (in the early 1990s) and moved to restore relations in 2010. However, normalization efforts were canceled after the ouster of President Mohamed Nasheed in February 2012.

The response of Israel

In response to the ban, a spokesman for Israel’s Foreign Ministry urged citizens currently in the Maldives to leave. “For Israeli citizens residing in the country, it is recommended that they consider leaving, as if they find themselves in a difficult time for any reason, it will be difficult for us to help.”

Israeli passport holders are also not allowed to enter Algeria, Bangladesh, Brunei, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Yemen.

In a post on X last March, the State of Israel commented: “We’re good,” in response to a post about these countries’ entry bans, which were in place before the ongoing war began in Gaza.

Co-Founder & Chief Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network | + Articles

Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.

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