Israeli court urges reroute of planned West Bank barrier

By REUTERS
December 13, 2012 19:40

 
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JERUSALEM - Israel's highest court has urged defense officials to reroute a barrier planned for construction on ancient farmland at a West Bank Palestinian village. The latest decision followed a rare appeal involving support from an Israeli government environmental agency for a Palestinian challenge.

In their ruling on Thursday, judges wrote that only a 500-metre (yard) long section of the security wall was under dispute at the village of Battir, known for its terraced agricultural fields, some of which are believed go back to biblical times.

"In light of the unique character of the region in question, it would be worthy for security officials to do some more thinking especially about what type of divider and security arrangements to employ in the problematic section," the justices wrote.

The court gave the Defense Ministry a 90-day deadline to respond. Appellants in the case will have 15 days after that to react.

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