Daily Israel Report

Jews Demand 'Arab Only' Roads be Opened to All

Jews living in Binyamin decide that if Israeli roads are open to the PA, then PA roads will be open to Israelis.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 1/5/2011, 8:48 PM / Last Update: 1/5/2011, 9:37 PM

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Israelis living in Binyamin have decided that if Israeli roads are open to Palestinian Authority traffic, formerly “Arab only” roads should be open to everyone as well. Dozens of residents of Talmonim took action on Tuesday, driving along a road that is usually used exclusively by PA Arabs.

The road they chose runs between Neve Tzuf and Nachliel, and passes the Arab village of Dir Amar. The road is not officially closed by Jews, but has become a de-facto Arab-only road.

The next step is to use roads that are officially closed to Jews, organizers explained. “If the army is going to open roads to Arabs and put us in danger, we will travel on the roads that are [now] closed to us,” they said.

Many roads that for years were used only by Israelis have been opened to PA traffic in recent months. The roads, built by Israel and formerly used by Israelis and PA Arabs alike, were closed to PA traffic almost a decade ago following hundreds of terrorist attacks, many of them fatal.

Israelis have protested that reopening the roads will put them in danger. There have been multiple fatal shooting attacks on Judea and Samaria roads over the past year, as well as several rock and firebomb attacks that ended in injury.

“The army's actions are threatening our security,” said members of the Binyamin Residents' Council. “It's disgraceful that there are roads that Jews cannot travel on. Arabs drive on our highways with no worries, and we are forbidden to use roads in the Land of Israel.

“We will not allow this capitulation, which projects weakness,” they continued, concluding, “We will work against anti-Jewish discrimination.”