Maldives Effort to Ban Israelis Faces Challenge: Arabs with Israeli Passports

Maldives (Getty)

An effort by the Maldives, a tiny Muslim nation in the Indian Ocean, to ban Israelis has run into a problem: the fact that Israel’s population is 20% Arab means that the ban excludes many Arab Muslims as well.

As Breitbart News reported earlier this month:

The South Asian island state of the Maldives announced Sunday it would ban individuals with Israeli passports from entering the country as a form of protest against Israel’s ongoing self-defense operations against the jihadist terror group Hamas in Gaza.

The change will require an overhaul of several Maldivian laws, the office of President Mohamed Muizzu explained, which the executive would spearhead to ensure Israelis could not enter the country.

The government of the Maldives is formally Islamist and requires its officials to be Sunni Muslims. It previously banned Israelis from entering during the 1990s and early 2010s, rescinding the ban in 2010.

However, reports, the government of the Maldives has realized that some Arabs, or Palestinians, hold Israeli passports:

Weeks after announcing plans to ban Israeli tourists from entering the Maldives, the island nation’s Attorney General Ahmed Usham has highlighted challenges to this extreme measure. The announcement has captured media attention worldwide, particularly in Israel.

“The biggest concern is that there are many Palestinians with Israeli passports, millions of them. What happens when we impose a blanket ban? These are matters that need careful consideration,” Usham remarked, noting that a solution would be found.

There are also concerns about how a ban on Israelis — especially after the October 7 attack — would affect tourism.

The Maldives is vocal about one other issues: climate change. The island nation has warned that it may be submerged  completely if the oceans rise due to melting glaciers.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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