One of the most blatant examples of the segregation imposed by Israel on Palestinians is the system of roads built in the West Bank exclusively for Israeli Jewish settlers. West Bank Palestinians are denied the right to travel on these segregated roads. The separate road system for Palestinians is often unpaved and in some cases is little more than a trail, rather than an actual road.
Meanwhile, a modern freeway system designed to link illegal Jewish settlements to each other and to Israel proper has been built for Jewish Israelis. Vehicles with Palestinian licenses are completely prohibited from traveling on approximately 105 kilometers of West Bank roads, according to the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem. Palestinians can travel on the remaining 180 kilometers of Israeli-built roads in the West Bank only if they can obtain a special permit or if they travel in an ambulance. The Israeli road system crisscrosses the West Bank in a way that seems designed to prevent the formation of a contiguous and viable Palestinian state.
Within Israel itself, Palestinians from the West Bank or Gaza are prohibited from driving on Israeli roads. Israeli citizens also cannot bring Palestinians into Israel through passages designated for Israelis only.
- “Separate and Unequal,” a report by Human Rights Watch.
- An Israeli in Palestine, by Jeff Halper.
- “Restriction of Movement,” by B’Tselem: The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the OccupiedTerritories. http://www.btselem.org/freedom_of_movement/checkpoints_and_forbidden_roads