Israel asks citizens to explore India

Israel urges citizens to visit India and its beaches amid entry ban imposed by Maldives. Photo Courtesy: Unsplash 

With Maldives banning Israeli passport holders from visiting the island nation, the Israel Embassy in New Delhi on Monday urged its citizens to visit India and explore the sea beaches.

The Embassy posted on X: “Since the Maldives is no longer welcoming Israelis, here are some beautiful and amazing Indian beaches where Israeli tourists are warmly welcomed and treated with utmost hospitality.”

Maldives has banned Israeli passport holders from entering the Island Nation amid public outrage over the ongoing war in Gaza.

The decision was announced by Home Minister Ali Ihusan, in an emergency press briefing at the President’s Office late Sunday afternoon, reported Sun Online International.

Ihusan said the decision was taken during a Cabinet meeting.

“The cabinet decided today to make the legal amendments necessary to ban entry into the Maldives on Israeli passports as soon as possible,” he was quoted as saying by the news portal.

According to reports, Maldives records the arrival of over one million tourist arrivals each year which include 15,000 tourists from Israel.

The decision by the Maldivian government to ban Israeli passports comes after Meekail Ahmed Naseem, a lawmaker from the main opposition Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), submitted an amendment to Immigration Act last week, to bar the entry of Israeli citizens, reported Sun Online International.

Maldives is an Islamic Republic known for its sandy white beaches and   shallow turquoise lagoons which attract tourists from across the globe every year.

Israel began the Gaza invasion after Hamas launched an attack on October 7 which left  1,200 people dead.

At least 240 people were taken as hostages by Hamas members.