ISRAELI FORCES SHUT DOWN MAJOR RAMALLAH-AREA CHECKPOINT

A file photo shows traffic on a road near Bethlehem following a checkpoint closure. (Photo: MaanImages/File).
A file photo shows traffic on a road near Bethlehem following a checkpoint
closure. (Photo: MaanImages/File).

Ramallah, 24 Jumadil Awwal 1436/15 March 2015 (MINA)–   Israeli forces closed the major Jaba checkpoint near Ramallah Saturday morning, blocking vehicles bound for the city and other parts of the northern West Bank.

Witnesses reported heavy traffic as a result of the closure, and Israeli soldiers set up a temporary checkpoint and searched cars and checked the identities of their passengers, Ma’an News Agency quoted by Mi’raj Islamic  News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

Jaba checkpoint lies on the main road to Ramallah from the southern West Bank, near the Qalandia crossing into Jerusalem.

It has been regularly closed in the past.

Israeli forces maintain severe restrictions on Palestinians’ freedom of movement in the West Bank through a complex combination of fixed checkpoints, flying checkpoints, roads forbidden to Palestinians but open exclusively to Jewish settlers, and various other physical obstructions.

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At any given time there are about 100 permanent Israeli checkpoints in the West Bank, while surprise flying checkpoints often number into the hundreds.

The internationally recognized Palestinian territories of which the West Bank and East Jerusalem form a part have been occupied by the Israeli military since 1967.  (T/P010/R04)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)