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Israel erects new checkpoints in the occupied West Bank and breaches the ceasefire again

Following the angry protests which erupted n the wake of the killing of a Palestinian college student by Israeli soldiers in the West Bank, the occupation authorities have erected a number of new military checkpoints. Two other students were wounded in the incident in which Miss Luban Hanash, aged 22, was shot in the head and killed outside her college.

Most of the new checkpoints were put up at the main roads leading to Hebron and its suburbs, including Yatta, Sa'eer, Beit Kahel, Karza and Al-Samou'.

"The Israelis want to reduce the impact of Palestinian protests against the killing of the student," said one local resident, "but the existence of such military checkpoints increases the suffering of the people."

Elsewhere in the occupied West Bank, a large number of Jewish settlers descended on the city of Nablus and performed religious rituals around the tomb of Prophet Joseph. The illegal settlers were not only heavily armed but also protected by Israeli soldiers. This type of incident occurs every two or three weeks but on this occasion the settlers threw stones at Palestinian cars and houses. The soldiers fired acoustic bullets and tear gas at Palestinians who protested against the settlers' actions.

In the Jordan valley, meanwhile, Israeli forces destroyed a tent village belonging to Palestinian Bedouins for the third time. The head of Al-Maleh and the other nomadic villages in the Jordan Valley region, Aref Daraghmeh, told the local media that the Israelis gave no notice about the demolition. "They want us to leave this area and deny any Palestinian existence here," he said.

In yet another breach of last November's ceasefire, four Israeli military bulldozers protected by three tanks razed a large area of farmland near Khan Younis, destroying some newly-planted trees in the process. Smoke bombs were used to deter Palestinian farmers from challenging the incursion.

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