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Gazan Formula student team denied UK visas

June 22, 2011 7:12 P.M. (Updated: June 22, 2011 7:12 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – The British embassy in Amman, Jordan denied Palestinian students visas to UK to compete in the 2011 Formula Student in London.

Sources told Ma’an the denial was due to the fact that the Palestinian Formula Student team did not have an official financer during its stay in London.

Formula Student is student engineering competition to be held in London July 14-17. The contest challenges youngsters from around the world to design, build and race a single-seat racing car from scratch.

The source, who spoke to Ma’an without revealing identity, said the students were shocked especially that they have spent a whole year designing the Formula 1-style car despite all hardships.

Students in an UNRWA-run school in the Gaza Strip have built a Formula 1-style race car from mainly recycled parts. They were preparing to enter the Formula Student auto race in the United Kingdom. If they managed to make to London, that would reflect great will, determination and creativity despite the crippling siege Israel has been imposing on the coastal enclave for almost four years.

The car was built by a group of Gazan students and their teacher at Gaza Training Center in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip which is run by the UNRWA. After the car was completed and painted, the team ran a test drive earlier this month.

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