Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams says Israel bans him from Gaza visit

Irish republican politician and president of the Sinn Féin political party Gerry Adams (L) meets with Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas in Ramallah on Dec. 4. AFP Photo

Irish nationalist leader Gerry Adams says Israel has barred him from making a planned visit to the Gaza Strip during a three-day tour of the region.

Adams says he was not given a reason for the Israeli decision preventing Friday’s trip and adds that he is disappointed by it.

Israel’s Defense Ministry – which controls access from Israel to the densely populated strip – was not immediately available for comment.

Adams’ Sinn Fein Party has long taken a pro-Palestinian position in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Earlier in his trip to the region, Adams met with Issac Herzog, leader of Israel’s opposition Labor Party, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Adams said that while in Gaza, he had intended on meeting with NGOs, and visiting hospitals and other public institutions.

UPDATE: More background on Adams’ pro-Palestine position at The Times of Israel.