IDF: Was Hebron Street 'Intentionally' Closed to Palestinians?

Israel Defense Forces Central Command head Yair Naveh has appointed an IDF officer to investigate whether Shuhada Street in Hebron has been intentionally closed to non-Jewish pedestrians for the past six years.

The IDF has closed the street, located in the old market, to non-Jews since the beginning of the second intifada, citing the need to protect the Jewish population there.

However, the IDF has not issued an official order calling for the closure. Following a petition by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, the army claimed last December that the closure had been "unintentional."

The closure has made life difficult for Palestinian residents of Hebron, including the elderly, who have to take long detours through neighboring yards and residences. Palestinians are still not allowed to use Shuhada Street.

Amos Harel adds: For the first time last month, an indictment was filed in connection with illegal construction at a West Bank outpost. The indictment was filed in the Kfar Sava Magistrate's Court against a Karnei Shomron resident accused of laying electric cables on land owned by a Palestinian farmer.

The cables caused a safety hazard and made it difficult to work the land. Following a petition to the High Court of Justice, the state removed the cables, which, according to the human rights organization Yesh Din, now lie partly on a different Palestinian's private land and partly on state land.