A day after Israel confirmed that they were not going to allow four communication systems meant for a Palestinian University, India has decided to replace them with communication equipment which adhere to Israeli regulations, the government said on Tuesday.
So, while President Pranab Mukherjee was not able to gift the systems to Palestine’s Al-Quds University during his two-day visit, it will be done by India’s envoy in Palestine in the next few weeks.
“Four communication devices which have frequencies that are not allowed in Israel have not been permitted. We will substitute them with other communication devices,” the Ministry of External Affairs’ official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said on Tuesday.
The refusal to clear the items by Israeli authorities had created some trouble during Mukherjee’s landmark visit to the country. The President was scheduled to gift 30 computers along with the communication equipment to the India-Palestine Centre for Excellence in Information and Communication Technology at the Al-Quds University in Ramallah, the seat of Palestine Authority.
However, Israel, from where the equipment were to come through, did not allow entry of any communication equipment on grounds of security.
While the Israeli customs cleared the passage of 30 computers which were stuck at the Ashdod port to be moved to the university, the communication systems remained at the Ben Gurion airport.
Israel embassy spokesperson Ohad Horsandi said on Monday,”While 30 computers were cleared by the customs authorities…my sense is that the communication systems don’t adhere to rules and regulations of Israel.” He added that the same rules apply to both Israel and Palestine. He also gave the example of satellite phones, which are not allowed by Indian government to enter the country.
Al-Quds University has witnessed clashes since September after Israel banned for Palestinians the Al Aqsa mosque — the third holiest site of Islam located in the compound of Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif site, which is revered by Jews.