Lara Alqasem, the American student detained in Israel’s airport, will be allowed to stay and study in the country, Israel’s Supreme Court ruled.
Alqasem, 22, had been detained at Ben-Gurion Airport since Oct. 2 on suspicion of supporting the boycott, divestments and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel. She is enrolled as a student in a graduate program in human rights at Hebrew University. Israel sought to deport her under a 2017 law that allows the country to bar entry to BDS activists.
Alqasem challenged the ban on her entry in Israeli court, and two courts had ruled against her before she appealed to Israel’s Supreme Court last week. The Supreme Court overturned the lower courts’ rulings on Oct. 18 because it found that in seeking to study at Hebrew University, Alqasem was pursuing an increased connection to Israel — rather than a boycott of the country. PJC