Israel to loosen some restrictions on Palestinian entry during next week’s Eid

The Israeli military body that regulates Palestinians’ movement into Israeli territory announces that some restrictions on Palestinian travel will be loosened during the upcoming Eid al-Adha holiday.

The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, widely known by its acronym COGAT, says its office has approved the measures. Eid al-Adha, held this year on July 9-13, is one of the holiest days in the Muslim calendar and is traditionally accompanied by large family gatherings.

“We emphasize that the issuance of all the permits, both for residents of the Judea and Samaria area and residents of the Gaza Strip, will be subject to security evaluations,” COGAT says, using the biblical name for the West Bank that is commonly used in Israel.

West Bank Palestinians will be allowed special permission to visit family members in Israel. Some 500 Palestinians will be allowed to fly out of Ben Gurion Airport, while another 200 will be allowed to visit the southern city of Eilat.

Tighter restrictions will remain on the Gaza Strip, which is ruled by the Hamas terror group. The coastal enclave has been blockaded by both Israel and Egypt since Hamas took over in a coup some 15 years ago.

Nonetheless, 400 Palestinians from Gaza will receive the prized permits to visit Jerusalem during the sacred festival. Only men over the age of 55 and women over the age of 50 are eligible, COGAT says.

Israel will permit another 500 Palestinians from Gaza to visit family inside Israel and the West Bank, according to COGAT.

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