Israel Eases West Bank Travel Restrictions Ahead of Christmas

Four hundred West Bank Palestinians will be allowed to fly out of Ben-Gurion Airport, near Tel Aviv, instead of having to use the airport in Amman, Jordan.

A muslim woman takes a selfie picture in front of a Christian manger, in the West Bank city of Bethlehem on the Manger Square near the Church of the Nativity,  on December 16, 2015.
AFP

Israel has announced a number of measures to ease travel restrictions for Christian Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip during the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.

The steps were being coordinated by Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot and Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the coordinator of government activities in the territories.

Four hundred West Bank Christians will be allowed to fly out of Ben-Gurion International Airport, near Tel Aviv, instead of having to use the airport in Amman, Jordan.

Fifty Gaza Christians will be permitted to transit through Israel and to enter Jordan via the Allenby Bridge for foreign travel. Five hundred Christians from the West Bank will be permitted to visit relatives living in the Gaza Strip, and 800 Gazan Christian residents will be allowed to visit East Jerusalem and the West Bank to see relatives.

In addition, Christians from the Gaza Strip will receive permission to cross through Israel in order to enter Egypt at the Taba border crossing.