Five frum South African citizens who landed in Israel on Friday were denied entry into the country and forced to board a return flight out of the country on Shabbos, Maariv reported.
The South Africans, two of whom had traveled to Israel to be menachem avel the family of terror victim Eli Kay, h’yd, had left South Africa before the new travel restrictions due to the Omicron variant had been announced and were not even aware of them when they arrived in the country,
When they arrived at Ben-Gurion after a stopover in Dubai, they were taken to a side room by airport officials and told that they were banned from entering the country and they will have to return to Dubai. When they protested that they couldn’t fly on Shabbos, the officials told them that they would arrest them if they didn’t board the plane.
Elana Smith, a friend of Eli’s mother, Devora Kay, told Maariv: “They treated us like criminals. We asked questions and they yelled at us to be quiet and not ask questions. I told them that I can’t be mechallel Shabbos and they told me that they’ll arrest me if I don’t board the plane. I hadn’t eaten in over 24 hours and I was mechallel Shabbos for the first time in my life.”
Dubai also denied the South Africans entry into the country and they were forced to fly back to South Africa on Shabbos.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)