West Bank Update

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A “large number of lower-level Hamas activists have recently been released from Israeli jails after serving sentences of about five years for relatively minor intifada-related crimes.â€? The fear is that they will set up terror cells in the West Bank to uses terrorism techniques they learned in jail. (Ha’Aretz)

Senior IDF officers are “reportedly furious over the lack of effective legal measures against [Jewish] rioters and because the government is taking no steps against yeshiva teachers who incite to violence.â€? Violent demonstrators come from both left and right. (Ha’Aretz)

The pace of the security fence’s construction has slowed drastically, with significant remaining holes around Ariel, Jerusalem and Gush Etzion, plus the entire section south of Yatir. And the defense establishment is no longer blaming leftists and lawyers for the delays. (Ha’Aretz)

Avi Issacharoff says that reports of settler violence against Palestinians and their property are up substantially this year, by the reasons are not known. (Ha’Aretz)

Reuven Bachar proposes that “as long as a lull is maintained in the relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, 50 significant [non-Hamas] Palestinian prisoners will be released every month.� This sends the message that abducting an Israeli will halt the release of Palestinian prisoners, not accelerate it. (YNet)

Posted on August 20, 2008

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