Israel's Plan to "Improve Life" for PA Arabs
(IsraelNN.com) The IDF plan to ease restrictions for Palestinian Authority Arabs in Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley, is being implemented "in accordance with political echelon directives," according to a statement by the army spokesperson's unit. The plan was created following a series of meetings between regional IDF commanders, PA security officials and other PA senior officials.
"The IDF and the Civil Administration are constantly operating to enable different relief measures to the Palestinian population whilst guaranteeing the security of the citizens of Israel," the IDF noted. Much of the plan has already been implemented, but much more is yet to come, according to the notice sent out to the media, including significant easing of security restrictions as well as major improvements to infrastructure and economic development.
For example, the plan calls for construction of two intersections in Hevron, upgrading of five checkpoints in Judea and Samaria and establishment of industrial zones in Jericho, Jenin and Tarqumiya. A hospital is to be built in northern Samaria, and "the authorization of 14 plans will allow the legal settling of thousands of Palestinian [Authority Arabs]." In addition, 20 PA police stations are to be established. A PA tourism conference held in Bethlehem in May brought in a profit of some NIS 20 million and contracts worth an estimated $ 1.4 billion. Security concessions included the removal of 70 checkpoints and roadblocks in the month of May alone, a 40% increase in the number of PA workers allowed into pre-1967 Israel, permission for 5,000 PA workers to stay overnight in the area and 500 permits issued for senior PA businessmen.