Israeli military reopens Ramallah after closure
The Israeli military reopened the main Palestinian city in the West Bank late Monday after imposing a rare, day-long partial closure of surrounding roads following a Palestinian shooting attack on Israeli soldiers the day before.
Citing a “situation assessment,” the military said crossings to and from Ramallah have returned to normal.
Ramallah is the seat of the semi-autonomous Palestinian Authority and is a commercial center, drawing workers from around the West Bank. “Internal closures” were common during the Palestinian uprising that ended a decade ago, but have been rarely used in recent years.
Early on Monday, the military blocked access to Ramallah to all but city residents, and only residents of other towns and humanitarian cases were allowed to leave.
The move came a day after a Palestinian policeman who served as a bodyguard for the Palestinian attorney general opened fire at a checkpoint near the city, wounding three soldiers.
Despite the measure, a row of about 100 cars queued at a checkpoint that was closed in the morning could be seen streaming through, and a main road out of the city, which had earlier been closed, was later opened.
Palestinians said the partial closure was collective punishment for the act of one individual.
“They shouldn’t punish the entire governorate of Ramallah for a policeman who carried out an attack,” said Palestinian police spokesman Adnan Damiri.