Jerusalem, 15 June 2000

PM’s Office: Yemen Entry Ban in Force
(Communicated by the Defense Minister’s Media Adviser)

The Prime Minister’s Office wishes to clarify that Israeli residents are prohibited from entering Yemen without a special permit from the Interior Minister; anyone entering Yemen without such a permit is committing a criminal act. Whoever assists in organizing a trip to Yemen (i.e. a travel agency or tour guide) is likewise violating the law.

Several Israeli tourists have visited Yemen recently and several companies are even engaged in organizing trips to Yemen; the Prime Minister’s Office has informed travel agencies of the gravity of the issue.

It should be noted that the phenomenon of abducting foreign tourists for ransom and use as bargaining chips with the local authorities exists in Yemen; several tourists have even been murdered. Several extremist Islamic organizations – which vigorously oppose the entry of Israelis – are active in Yemen and are liable to attack Israeli tourists. There is no Israeli representation in Yemen which could aid Israeli tourists in distress.