TEL AVIV - Israel has set up a mechanism to funnel aid to the Palestinians in the event of an earthquake, though its emergency relief services would not deploy throughout their territory, Israeli officials said on Tuesday.

A 5.5-magnitude quake rattled Israel and the West Bank on Friday, reminding residents of their common vulnerability to the Syria-African Rift, a northern extension of Africa's Rift Valley, despite the deadlock in talks on founding an independent Palestinian state.

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Given Israel's control over and inside the West Bank, it would, in the event of a major quake, host a United Nations aid distribution center to receive relief from abroad, by air and the Mediterranean sea, for Israelis and Palestinians.