K. Shomron residents: Don't fence us in

Expected to protest the route of the security barrier around their community.

October 11, 2006 23:47
1 minute read.
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Angry Karnei Shomron residents are expected to protest the route of the security barrier around their community on Thursday morning. While residents of Judea and Samaria have often demanded to be included within the boundaries of the barrier because they feared it would prove more of a political border than a security barrier, these residents are upset because they believe the barrier boxes them in. At first, Karnei Shomron was placed outside the security barrier. The government subsequently changed its route to encompass the town by linking it with the rest of the country via a narrow strip of road. The fenced-in area looks almost like a finger or a mushroom. "It is a very modern ghetto," said veteran resident Sarah Dolov. The residents had originally hoped the barrier would encircle their settlement along with several others. Instead, it now cuts them off from neighboring settlements, Dolov said. "We do not want it, it doesn't help us," she said. Lillian Zietman, who works for Karnei Shomron's local council and lives in neighboring Kedumim, said she would prefer not to have the barrier at all. If it must exist, she said, she would prefer its route to be more inclusive. "The fence is wrong and it won't keep the Palestinians from hurting us," said Zeitman. In 2002, a suicide bomber detonated a bomb in a pizza shop close to her office, killing two teenagers and wounding more than 20 people. All this fence will do is strangle the community, she said. Karnei Shomron resident Been Raz of the left-wing movement One House also opposes the security barrier. He said he might attend the rally, but he had been focusing his efforts on pushing the government to pay him compensation that would allow him to leave, out of a deep belief that the area will one day be given to the Palestinians. An early compensation bill was likely to be introduced in the Knesset soon, Raz said, adding that he was hopeful it would secure the support of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Now that public sentiment has swung against Olmert's convergence plan to withdraw from isolated areas of the West Bank, Raz said passage of a law that would compensate settlers who left was the only measure Olmert could take that would appease the United States.

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