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Palestinian beach football team barred from travel by Israel

The Palestinian athletes were prevented from exiting Gaza via the Erez border crossing [Anadolu]

Date of publication: 22 September, 2016

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Athletes will miss the Fifth Asian Beach Games in Vietnam after Israeli authorities prevent team members from exiting Gaza.

Members of the Palestine's national beach soccer team were banned from travelling to an international tournament on Wednesday by Israeli authorities, a Palestinian athletic official reported.

The team was due to attend the Fifth Asian Beach Games in Danang, Vietnam.

"The Israeli authorities stopped all 14 members of the team from crossing the Erez border crossing," team captain Imad Hashim told Anadolu.

"The Israeli ban will keep us from taking part in the competition, due to kick off next Saturday in Danang," he continued.

The team captian added that the Israeli authorities did not provide a reason for the travel restriction.

Situated on the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip, the Erez crossing is one of seven border crossings that connects the coastal strip to the outside world.

Six of the seven crossings are controlled by Israel, who have maintained a blockade on Gaza since 2007.

The seventh is controlled by Egypt, who have also tightly controlled flow in and out of the Palestinian territory.

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