Jerusalem 1 September 1997

IDF ANNOUNCES MEASURES TO EASE CLOSURE

(Communicated by IDF Spokesman’s Office)

Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai, along with Chief-of-Staff Lt.-Gen. Amnon Lipkin-Shahak, and in cooperation with Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj.-Gen. Ya’acov Orr yesterday (Sunday), 31.8.97, ordered a series of measures to ease the entry of Palestinians from Judea, Samaria and Gaza into Israel:

Starting today, 4,000 workers from Judea and Samaria and 2,000 from Gaza will be permitted to enter Israel, provided that they are married and over 35.

In addition, 2,000 merchants (1,000 each from Gaza and Judea and Samaria), will be permitted to enter Israel, provided that they are married and over 30, thus bringing the number of merchants allowed to enter Israel to a total of 4,000.

250 teachers from Judea and Samaria will be permitted to enter eastern Jerusalem. 200 employees of the Palestinian Authority will be allowed to transit Israel between Judea and Samaria, and Gaza.

The decision on the measures was taken following an evaluation of the situation and is accepted by all the security elements.

The situation will continue to be evaluated daily; further measures to ease the closure will be made accordingly.