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      Money Runs Out on Partition Wall, Gov't Planning Egypt Wall

      The government has run out of money to complete the Judea/Samaria Partition Fence, and construction has even been halted in some areas.
      By Ezra HaLevi
      First Publish: 9/2/2007, 1:01 AM

      The government has run out of money to complete the Judea/Samaria Partition Fence, and construction has been halted. A fence along the Egyptian border is now being discussed.

      The Defense Ministry has slowed considerably the construction of the Partition Fence being built between Judea and Samaria and pre-1967 Israel in recent weeks. Construction in certain parts of the combination fence and wall has been halted altogether – because construction costs accrued until now have used up all the money allotted to it.

      According to Arutz-7 security correspondent Haggai Huberman, no new contracts are being drawn up by those overseeing the wall’s construction, and 500 million shekels that was to be allocated to its construction in the 2008 budget has been shaved off as well.

      Old contracts, such as that for the wall encompassing Gush Etzion, will continue to be executed, and the fence in that area will be completed, Huberman reports. But segments that have passed legal challenges, where building has not yet commenced – such as some of the western Samaria “protrusions” and the wall in the Modiin region – will not see construction begin in the near future.

      Defense Minister Ehud Barak confirmed the reports at last week’s cabinet meeting, saying that the 2008 budget cut will “further delay [the wall’s] completion.”

      Wall Along Egyptian Border Planned
      Israel is planning to build a fence along its border with Egypt to prevent the smuggling of terrorists, sex-slaves, drugs and refugees, and hopes the Egyptian government will partner with it to that end.

      The first indication that a concrete plan for this project is being worked on was given by Prime Minister's Office Director Ra'anan Dinur at a meeting of the Knesset Committee on Foreign Workers last Tuesday.

      Construction of the fence would cost up to 3 billion shekels. Arutz-7’s Huberman reports that according to Defense Ministry officials the financing would come at the expense of the Partition Wall.

      Livni in 2005: Fence is Future Border
      Some analysts have proposed that the remaining segments, many of which were supposed to enclose Jewish communities further from the 1967 Green Line, have been left until last specifically in order that funds should “run out” ahead of negotiations with the PA.

      In a speech at a law conference in Caesaria following the Gaza withdrawal in December, 2005, then-Justice Minister Tzipi Livni (now Foreign Minister) stated publicly for the first time that “any thinking person knows that” the Partition Wall will serve as “the future border of the state of Israel.” She also admitted that “the Supreme Court, in its rulings over the fence, is drawing the state’s borders.”

      Supreme Court Justice Mishael Cheshin, who was present at the conference, objected, saying the government has insisted before the court that the fence was for security purposes.

      See the left-hand column of the IsraelNN.com homepage to vote in a poll about the purpose of the wall