In a severe step, the military cut off the city of Ramallah from the rest of the West Bank: at night, the movement restrictions were removed המוקד להגנת הפרט
01.02.2016
In a severe step, the military cut off the city of Ramallah from the rest of the West Bank: at night, the movement restrictions were removed
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In an extreme step, on February 1, 2016, the military encircled the West Bank city of Ramallah, and completely prevented the city’s population from leaving – except in rare instances, and also prohibited entry to the city of anyone whose identity card did not list Ramallah as their place of residence – even if they live in the city. Thus, the military cut off this major city – a city which provides the livelihood, education, health services and more of tens of thousands of Palestinians – from the rest of the West Bank.

HaMoked hastened to contact the Military Commander of the West Bank to demand the encirclement be lifted at once. In its letter, HaMoked recalled that imposing encirclement on Palestinian communities constituted collective punishment, prohibited under international law; HaMoked also stressed that this was an unbalanced act of punishment – rather than a preventive-security measure – which was violating the basic rights of hundreds of thousands of people based on nothing but intangible security alerts.

HaMoked added that this step contradicted an earlier undertaking by the state, in HCJ 7577/06, whereby encirclement “does not mean a sweeping ban on exit from and entry to a certain area, but means the subjection of travel into and out of that area to security checks”.

In the early night hours, the encirclement on Ramallah was lifted.
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