The easing of restrictions during the holiday is part of a general policy to improve the quality of life of the Palestinian population in the area.

 Easing of restrictions for Palestinians in the West Bank during Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr holiday

 

West Bank crossing (IDF archive photo)

(Communicated by the IDF Spokesperson)

In anticipation of the upcoming Ramadan period which begins on 21 August 2009 and is followed by the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr, the IDF and Civil Administration are easing restrictions for the Palestinian population in the Judea and Samaria region. The decision to carry out these improvements was made in accordance with the directives of Defense Minister Ehud Barak, and in light of security assessments by the IDF Central Command and the Civil Administration. The easing of restrictions is part of a general policy to improve the quality of life of the Palestinian population in the area.

Throughout the Ramadan period, the operational hours of the Jalama crossing to Jenin and the Beit Mishpat crossing to Ramallah will be extended until 24:00 daily. The remaining checkpoints will operate as usual. Entrance of Israeli Arabs into Jenin via buses from 09:00-11:00 and 16:00-22:00 will also be made possible through the Salem crossing to Jenin every weekday except Friday. Additionally, Israeli Arabs will be authorized to enter Bethlehem via the Rachel crossing in order to visit their families. Palestinian families who have relatives in Israel will be given permission to cross into Israel for a week. 

Men aged 50 and over and women aged 45 and over will be given authorized entry into the Temple Mount for prayer. The Allenby crossing between Israel and Jordan, will continue to operate between 08:00-24:00 allowing both civilians and goods to cross through.
 
Representatives from the Civil Administration met with Palestinian religious authorities who updated them on prayer times and upcoming religious events. Moreover, Civil Administration representatives briefed all of the forces operating in the area regarding the holiday times and traditions and distributed educational pamphlets on the topic. IDF soldiers have been given orders to show special consideration for the residents of the Judea and Samaria region and, wherever possible to refrain from eating and drinking in public, especially at the various crossings so as to demonstrate a high level of respect and understanding.