Avraham Inbar, a leftwing activist engaged in providing humanitarian assistance to PA Arabs told Makor Rishon on Friday that his friends on the other side of the “green line” are often taking advantage of their ties to leftist NGOs to gain legal entry permits into Israel. Three weeks ago, an Arab from the PA took advantage of the NGO NPT (Natural Peace Tour) to come to Tel Aviv and stab four Israeli civilians.
Inbar, a veteran left-wing activist who for many years has been dealing with getting permits for PA Arabs, now admits that they often use the “peace organizations” to enter Israel. But while admitting that “there is no doubt that there are cases in which Arabs exploit the peace organizations to get work and livelihood, and there have been isolated incidents like the one that happened a few weeks ago and ended in a terrorist attack,” he still argues that “we must not conclude that the entry permits to PA Arabs must be stopped,”
Inbar says there is an entire industry around getting the permits. PA businessmen set up tourism companies and organize groups to enter Israel. Inbar argues that Arabs in Gaza issue false medical certificates to enter Israel and work there illegally. “People will do anything to get out of Gaza, they go to the doctors and receive letters stating that they have to go to the hospital, sometimes the same Palestinian does not undergo treatment and goes to Shechem instead. There are 400 Gazans who have entered and not returned. Where are they? They’re walking around. Hamas doesn’t like it, neither does Fatah and certainly not Israel.”
Inbar himself is engaged in humanitarian activities, and this week has delivered 600 gifts to Gaza children “with the approval of the State of Israel, Hamas and Fatah.” He said that Israel actually wants PA Arabs to enter Israel, but the Palestinian Authority opposed it.
“There were times when the State of Israel authorized the entry of thousands of Palestinians, and there was no need to get a special permit. Many people entered during Ramadan, but the Palestinian Authority was very angry about it. Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) was angry that the Palestinians were wasting their money in Tel Aviv instead of Ramallah and Hebron, and he reduced the number of permits.”
Inbar added that the exploitation of the peace organizations by the PA Arabs ultimately harms the organizations themselves, as happened at the joint memorial ceremony for Arabs and Jews on the eve of Memorial Day. “There are Palestinians who take advantage of the visits to earn a living, and not exactly to promote peace, while damaging the good name of peace organizations. And those who are harmed most are the peace organizations that do real work.”