Bil'in demonstration 311 (R).
(photo credit: Reuters)
The army will finish work to change the route of the West Bank security barrier
near Bil’in within two months, in line with a 2007 High Court ruling, the IDF
announced on Wednesday.
Nevertheless, the IDF Central Command “expects
that weekly demonstrations in the Palestinian villages of Bil’in and Ni’lin will
continue,” the IDF Spokesman’s Office said.
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“We do not expect that this
will influence the demonstrations,” Lt.-Col. Shahar Sheetrit, of the Central
“There is all kinds of speculation about what will happen
in the future.”
The new route will be built about 400 meters from the
Modi’in Illit settlement.
“Residents of that community have expressed
some reservations to the IDF about the move of the barrier,” the Spokesman’s
Office said. “Stone tiles will be placed on the western side of the new barrier
so that it will look more aesthetic for residents.”
The Central Command
said that features of the new barrier will incorporate lessons learned about how
to protect communities from terrorists. Among other things, gates will be
included in the barrier, which will allow soldiers to act quicker when attackers
try to infiltrate Modi’in Illit.
In 2007, the High Court of Justice ruled
that a 1,700-meter-long part of the security barrier must be dismantled and that
an alternative section be built elsewhere.
The court said the original
route was designed to allow for the growth of Modi’in Illit, and was not guided
by security considerations.
The original route was topographically
inferior, endangering forces patrolling the area, the court said, according to
the IDF Spokesman’s Office.