JERUSALEM — More than 500 Israeli academics have denounced the government decision banning famed Jewish-American linguist Noam Chomsky from entering the West Bank last week.
In a letter to Interior Minister Eli Yishai on Tuesday, they accusing the ministry of harming democracy and academic freedoms.
The letter says: "Blocking someone whose opinions are not accepted is a mortal blow to democracy."
Signatories included faculty and students, linguists and philosophers.
The 81-year-old Chomsky, an outspoken critic of Israel, was to speak at a West Bank university last week when Israeli authorities barred him from entering from neighboring Jordan.
The Interior Ministry later said the border agent had made a mistake and Chomsky was welcome to return.