Prime minister shelves proposal to split Ghajar

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, after meeting with a number of key cabinet ministers and National Security Advisor Maj.-Gen. Giora Eiland on Wednesday decided not to split the northern border town of Ghajar. On Monday evening it was reported that the Alawite town might have been split in order to resolve a border contention between Israel and Lebanon. After Israel pulled out of Lebanon in 2005, Ghajar was left straddling the international border with openings into both the Israel and Lebanon. The option to build a fence traversing the international border in the middle of the town was reported on Monday, and evoked a lot of contention on the part of Ghajar's residents. The prime minister's office revealed that the proposal was shelved out of consideration for the town's residents as well as a whole basket of diplomatic, legal, and budgetary issues.