Israeli measures in West Bank restrict Palestinian govt activities: Official

A Palestinian official has said that Israeli measures restrict the Palestinian government activities in the West Bank, mainly in Area C which is under Israeli security control.

Majdi Al-Salleh, the Palestinian Minister of Local Affairs, told reporters on Tuesday in the West Bank city of Ramallah that the Israeli authorities carry out daily measures in the area, mainly demolishing homes, confiscating land, and destroying infrastructure.

“The Palestinian government is determined to support and strengthen the steadfastness of the Palestinian population in Area C, which represents 60 per cent of the West Bank,” he said.

The Palestinian government provides the residents of Area C with all the necessary infrastructure by building roads and connecting electricity and water networks, Al-Salleh added.

“There is a need for the European Union, its member states, and the World Bank to play their role in those areas targeted by the Israeli authorities and implement projects related to the water, electricity, health, and education sectors,” the Minister said.

On January 6, the Israeli government approved a series of punitive measures against the Palestinian Authority for its approach to the International Court of Justice in The Hague, including the deduction of $39.6 million from Palestinian tax dues, Xinhua news agency reported.

Palestinian officials have warned of the Israeli escalation of killing Palestinians, mainly after the formation of the new Israeli government headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, which is the most right-wing one in Israel’s history.

On Tuesday, the Palestinian Ministry of Health said Hamdi Abu Daiya, 40, was killed by Israeli soldiers in the town of Halhul, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron.

Local sources and eyewitnesses said Israeli soldiers opened fire at Abu Daiya, a member of the Palestinian security forces, adding the Israeli soldiers prevented ambulances from reaching him.

Israeli media outlets reported that a Palestinian opened fire at a military force near Halhul without causing any injuries, before the force returned fire and killed the Palestinian.

Nearly 15 Palestinians have been killed and dozens injured by Israeli soldiers since January 1, as the tension between Israelis and Palestinians has been flaring, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

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