Soldiers open highway 443 311.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski/The Jerusalem Post)
The Knesset Economic Affairs Committee on Monday begged Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to delay Friday's scheduled opening of the West Bank section of Route 443 to vehicles with Palestinian license plates.
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In its statement to him it said that Palestinian vehicles should not be on the road until such time as the IDF could execute proper security measures to safe guard the road.
The Friday time-table was set by the High Court of Justice, which had
ruled that the road must be opened to Palestinian vehicles in response
to a petition filed by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel.
at the meeting chastised the judges on the High Court of Justice for
not inspecting the road before issuing its ruling.
that the judges made a decision that impacts the lives of Israelis
without checking the route," said committee chairman MK Ofir Akonis
MK Yariv Levin (Likud) who lives in the city of Modin
located just off Route 443 said that some of the access granted
Palestinians to the road was illogical.
Palestinian motorist can
drive on the road as far as Camp Ofer and exit there, he said.
that exit takes them in two directions that are blocked to Palestinian
vehicles, Givat Ze'ev and Jerusalem. Nor can they access Ramallah from
that point, Levin said.
The only thing they can do at Camp Ofer is to
reverse direction and return to an earlier exit point, from which they
can head to Ramallah, he said,
It is just one example, he said, of
how the decision is disconnected from reality.
The police said
they planned to increase their presence on the road.
Ministry official showed the parliamentarians a map of the route and
explained how the IDF would protect the road and where they would
institute safety checks. But at the same time, he explained that it
would take eight months to properly prepare the right amount of lanes at
the check-points to allow for easy flow of traffic.
The road was
closed to Palestinian vehicles after six Israelis were killed in terror
attacks there and many others were wounded after the start of the
second intifada in October 2000.