IDF may remove 100 W. Bank roadblocks

Defense officials: Move would be part of goodwill gestures for Ramadan, and would ease movement.

July 20, 2009 02:53
1 minute read.
idf roadblock in w bank with un car

idf roadblock 298 88 idf. (photo credit: IDF [file])


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

In what could be the largest one-time easing of restrictions on Palestinians, the IDF is considering a list of gestures ahead of Ramadan, including the removal of over 100 dirt roadblocks throughout the West Bank. The package has been approved by head of the civil administration, Brig.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai, and is being considered by OC Central Command Maj.-Gen. Gadi Shamni. Once approved by the IDF, it would be brought to the cabinet for final authorization. Ramadan begins on August 21. Over the past two years, Israel has removed more than 100 unmanned dirt roadblocks and an additional 27 manned checkpoints, including those at the entrances to major cities such as Jericho, Jenin and Nablus. Defense officials said the lifting of the dirt roadblocks would dramatically improve freedom of movement for Palestinians in the West Bank. There are currently close to 400 dirt roadblocks that block off roads. "This would be a major improvement in travel times between different cities in the West Bank," one Defense Ministry official said. In addition to the lifting of roadblocks, the civil administration is also considering issuing dozens of new special permits for Palestinian businessmen that would allow them to cross checkpoints without inspections. There are already 180 businessmen with such permits. In Gaza, the civil administration is considering increasing the amount of imports allowed into the Strip, as well as the types of products. Under current Israeli policy, the Palestinians receive almost daily shipments of food, medical and hygiene products. One of the gestures under consideration is the transfer of hundreds of calves to the Gaza Strip for Ramadan feasts. The Palestinians had asked for close to 3,000 calves, but the request was rejected by Maj.-Gen. Amos Gilad, the temporary coordinator of government activities in the territories. Under pressure from Agriculture Minister Shalom Simhon, Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided last week to overrule Gilad's decision and to permit the import of the calves. Defense officials said the transfer would occur if Israel received Palestinian Authority guarantees that the animals would reach civilians in Gaza and not be confiscated by Hamas. AP contributed to this report.

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town