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Israeli forces block off entrance to villages northeast of Ramallah

Israeli-roadblock-checkpoint
[File photo]

Israeli forces closed the main entrance to a cluster of villages northeast of Ramallah in central occupied West Bank on Sunday morning for unknown reasons, according to locals.

Eyewitnesses told Ma’an News Agency that Israeli forces closed the iron gate installed at the entrance to a road that leads to Bani Zeid, Nabi Saleh, Beit Rima, Kafr Ein, and Qarawat Bani Zeid, which is also a main commuter link from Ramallah to Salfit city a few kilometres further north.

Israeli soldiers stationed at the gate were preventing all commuters from passing in either direction, while a large number of Israeli soldiers were deployed in the area around the gate.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an they were looking into reports.

Palestinian communities are routinely subjected to arbitrary road closures by Israeli military forces for purported “security reasons,” an act which rights groups have denounced as amounting to collective punishment.

The same group of villages were blockaded in February, forcing commuters to take lengthy detours.

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