Bethlehem mayor: 900 PA troops to Jesus' birthplace for Christman

Bethlehem Mayor Victor Batarseh said Monday that 900 Palestinian Authority troops will be sent to Jesus' traditional birthplace for Christmas. Security chief Diab al-Ali said there are negotiations with Israel on enabling the forces to stay on after the holiday, and expects a decision by the end of the week. In recent months, PA security forces have gradually deployed in several West Bank cities. They have taken up positions in Nablus, Jenin and Hebron as part of an effort by President Authority Mahmoud Abbas to expand control. Each deployment is a result of negotiations with Israel.