Israel to Disallow Free Movement for Palestinian Ministers

In wake of unity government formation, all travel requests between the West Bank and Gaza will be reviewed on an individual basis.

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Palestinian Education Minister Khawla Shakshir, right, shaking hands with President Abbas as PM Rami Hamdallah, far left, watches at the government swearing-in ceremony in Ramallah, June 2, 2014.
Palestinian Education Minister Khawla Shakshir, right, shaking hands with President Abbas as PM Rami Hamdallah, far left, watches at the government swearing-in ceremony in Ramallah, June 2, 2014. Credit: AP

Israel will bar members of the new Palestinian unity government from moving freely between the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

An official in the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories office confirmed that its head, Gen. Yoav Mordechai, told Palestinian Authority officials that Israel will only approve travel between the two areas after examining individual requests submitted to the Civil Administration.

Likewise, the coordinator informed PA officials that VIP certificates given to previous Palestinian ministers who are no longer serving would be rescinded. In contrast, Palestinian newspaper Al-Hayat reported Tuesday that a senior Palestinian official said that Israel would cancel all VIP certificates of top PA officials, save for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

Abbas swore in the unity government in Ramallah on Monday. Four ministers from Gaza who were prevented by Israel from traveling to the West Bank, were sworn in by teleconference.

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