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Graham Hughes/
In the name of the Fada

Israel tried to ban Dublin's Lord Mayor - officials missed him because they thought his first name was 'Ardmheára'

It is understood MacDonncha will be banned in future.

ISRAELI AUTHORITIES ALLOWED Dublin Lord Mayor Mícheál MacDonncha into the country because they mistook his title for his name.

Israel’s Strategic Affairs Ministry last night told Haaretz it would ban the Sinn Féin councillor from the country when his plane landed over his supposed ties to the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

However at that time, MacDonncha was already in a Ramallah hotel. The Sinn Féin politician is in Ramallah at the invitation of the Palestinian Authority for a major conference on the status of the City of Jerusalem.

He told that he had entered the country without issue.

“Rumours of my refusal are untrue. I’m in the hotel in Ramallah preparing for the conference.

“I came through Frankfurt and into Tel Aviv with no issues.”

It is now understood that MacDonncha was able to enter the country due to a spelling mistake by Israeli authorities.


Officials had mistaken this caption – Ardmhéara Mícheál MacDonncha – as his full name. Ardmheára is, of course, the Irish for Lord Mayor.

That mistake allowed MacDonncha enter the country, with a spokesperson for Israel’s Interior Ministry confirming to Haaretz’s Noa Landau that a mistake was made at the border crossing.

It had originally been planned to remove the Lord Mayor from the country today, but no legal way could be found to do so.

It is now understood that MacDonncha will be banned from Israel in the future.

The conference in Ramallah begins today.

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