Closures February 2007. Checkpoints and road blocks, known as “closures”, are a policy of physical barriers and permit requirements used to control Palestinian pedestrian and vehicular movement. The closures are imposed by the Israeli military as a security measure to protect its citizens.
The West Bank
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West Bank(5,600 km2)
Palestinian Built-up areas in the West Bankpop. 2,444,500PCBS 2006
161 Israeli settlements,96 outposts(183 km2)pop. 406,500ICBS 2004
Israeli military closed areas and 27 military bases(1,006 km2)
(As of 5 Oct 2006)
A barrier manned by IDF and/or Border Police with observation towers and other physical blocks used to control pedestrian and vehicular access.
An established checkpoint operating periodically.
A ditch dug across or along roads used to prevent vehicle movement.
A metal gate used to control Palestinian movement between roads.
A series of 1 metre concrete blocks placed across roads used by Palestinians to obstruct vehicle movement.
A mound of rubble, dirt, and boulders placed in the middle of a road used by Palestinians to obstruct vehicle movement.
A series of earthmounds less than 50m apart.
2 metre high fencing along West Bank roads which are reserved, generally, forIsraeli traffic. These fences impede Palestinians from using and crossing these roads many of which run between main cities.
West Bank Barrier
The Barrier is an additional impediment to Palestinian movement. A 703km long complex series of 8-9m high concrete walls, electronic fences, observation towers, trenches, patrol roads and razor wire used to block Palestinian pedestrian and vehicular movement inside the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Israeli Military Closed Areas
In addition to the several hundred fixed closures, random or “flying” checkpoints further restrict Palestinian movement.
455 of these random checkpoints were observed during January 2007.
Closures UpdateNumber of closures by type ( 22 February 2007)
CheckpointsA barrier manned by IDF and/or Border Police.
Partial CheckpointsAn established checkpoint operating periodically.
A metal gate, often manned by IDF, used to control movement along roads.
RoadblocksA series of 1 metre high concrete blocks used to obstruct vehicle access.
EarthmoundsA mound of rubble, dirt and/or rocks used to obstruct vehicle access.
TrenchesA ditch used to prevent vehicle crossing.
Road barriersRoad barriers placed alongside major roads prevent movement across the roads.
Earth WallsA continuous wall or series
of earth mounds used to restrict access.
TOTAL (22 February 2007)
Closures UpdateNo improvement in Palestinian movement
Number of West Bank Closures
*Figures include checkpoints and physical obstacles, data collected by OCHA
Closures and the Humanitarian Situation
Photo by OCHA/Steve Sabella
Methods and Credits
This Power Point Presentation may be used, however, must be accompanied by the date and source.
OCHA oPt has been monitoring the closures since 2003. Our field teams record the obstacles with a GPS unit. These files are used to make maps. The figures are regularly updated.
OCHA-oPt documents and maps are available at <www.ochaopt.org>
Phone +972 (0) 2582-9962
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