PA: Israel bans 29 people from undertaking Hajj
Israeli authorities on Sunday banned 29 West Bank Palestinians from traveling to Saudi Arabia to perform the Hajj pilgrimage, a PA official said Maan reported
Issa Qaraqe, minister of prisoner affairs in Ramallah, said that the pilgrims banned from traveling were relatives of prisoners in Israeli jails.
Last year, Israeli authorities also denied entry to Jordan for pilgrims on route to Mecca because they had relatives in Israeli prisons, Qaraqe said.
The minister slammed the policy, labeling it "aggressive behavior which violates the right to practice religious rites."
Over 300 pilgrims left Gaza for Mecca on earlier in October to take part in the Eid al-Adha celebrations in the holy city.
The Hajj is a pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia which all able bodied Muslims are obliged to undertake during their lifetime. It is one of the five pillars of Islam.