Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Can't Run In The Gaza Marathon... This Year

So I have been thinking about, but not seriously considering, running in the upcoming Gaza Marathon. It suddenyl struck me that I should not even bother to think about it until I find out if it is even possible, should I decide i want to.

I took a look at the UNRWA website, and it seemed form the information there that the marathon is only for Gazan runners, and UN staff. I sent off an email to the contact listed there for information, asking if it would even be possible for me to run, should I want to.

The following was his reply email to me:
Dear Rafi,
First of all, thank you so much for reaching out to me and for your interest in the Gaza marathon.
Unfortunately, as this is the first year that we have run the event, we're still working through a lot of the administrative details and it doesn't seem like it will be possible for us to accommodate people ordinarily living/working outside of Gaza this year. Also, as an Israeli citizen, you would likely not be permitted entry into Gaza (the Government of Israel has a strict ban on this) so you unfortunately probably would not be able to join us for the marathon in any event.
Thank you so much once again for your interest, and I very much hope that in the years to come we may find a way for you to come and run in Gaza! In the meantime, please do think about organising some kind of sister event (eg an event with your regular running group) on the day of the Marathon so that we link up.
All the best,
Gemma
Gemma Connell
Executive Assistant to the
Director of UNRWA Operations
Gaza Field Office
United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)
Office: +972 8 288 7265
Mobile: +972 599 891464
Email: g.connell@unrwa.org
So that solves that. Even if I wanted to, I would not be able to. i was even thinking about running it in a Free Gilad Shalit body suit..

Oh well. I guess we should just say "Next Year in Gaza"

1 comment:

gaza said...

what a pity. i can accept that this was a really difficult event to organize as there is a really high tension up there but i guess it would be better if they could accepted international runners