Israel Unveils Highway in West Bank Slammed by Palestinians as 'Apartheid Road'

Remigio Civitarese
Gennaio 11, 2019

The east side of the road is for settlers only, and connects the Geva Binyamin settlement to the Jerusalem-Tel Aviv highway.

But Palestinians travelling between the north and south of the West Bank would have to change course and some Palestinian villages would find themselves further isolated from Jerusalem, said Tatarsky.

The Israeli-accessible portion of the road is now only operating between 5am and noon, but will be fully opened as of January 10th, Israeli media reported.

Route 4370, which winds for several kilometres (miles) northeast of Jerusalem, consists of two separate two-way roads divided by a wall topped with fencing.

In 2002, Israel began to build a security barrier separating Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank in an apparent bid to bolster security following the Second Intifada; Palestinians dubbed the undertaking the "apartheid road", and the unveiling of another similar project is now causing controversy.

Palestinians are banned from using about 40 kilometers of roads within the Palestinian territory of the West Bank, while an additional 20 kilometers of roads are partially off-limits.

Palestinian officials and activists on the other hand have condemned the road as an example of Israeli apartheid and racism against Palestinians.

Still, he sees an advantage with the new road.

According to Haaretz, the road was built over a decade ago.

Many residents of nearby settlements work in Jerusalem.

A Palestinian man tried to carry out a stabbing attack near the West Bank city of Hebron on Friday and was shot and critically injured by troops, the army said.

By allowing Palestinians to still navigate between Ramallah and Bethlehem - in a very indirect manner - while diverting them from both the E-1 area and Jerusalem, the road eliminates a significant Palestinian presence.

"While legislative initiatives like the Greater Jerusalem Bill and other plans created to redraw the boundaries of the city may be stalled, infrastructure projects have already proven an effective tool for increasing connectivity between the blocs and the city, not only by solidifying physical linkages but also by eroding the boundaries of the city in the Israeli public consciousness", the group said.

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