Holy Land: UK watchdog asks Israel to withdraw misleading tourism ad

 Today, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ordered the Israeli Tourist Office to withdraw a ThinkIsrael.com advert implying that Qumran, the site where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found, is in Israel, when in fact it is in the Occupied West Bank.

North London resident Janet Green, said she was surprised when she saw the advert stating: 'You can travel the entire length of Israel in six hours' , with illustrations including an image of Qumran, in the 24 November edition of the Radio Times. Janet said: "I thought 'that's not right'. I am sure Qumran is not in Israel. Why are they claiming it is. I checked and then I made my official complaint. I was very pleased to see that they have agreed with me"

"This really matters because the lives of Palestinians living in the West Bank are made difficult by the Israeli-run checkpoints and barriers that restrict their day-to-day lives and adversely affect their economy. Palestinians should profit from tourism within the West Bank and the creeping expansion of Israel should be rejected by the UK and the rest of the world."

The ASA upheld Ms Green's complaint and expressed concern that ThinkIsrael did not respond to their enquiries. 

They said: "The ad breached Committee of Advertising Practice CAP Code clauses 2.8 (Non-response) and 7.1 (Truthfulness). The full text of the ASA decision can be seen at: www.asa.org.uk