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Israel tightens West Bank access ahead of Passover

Israel tightens West Bank access ahead of Passover

Israel restricted access to its territory from the West Bank on Friday ahead of the Jewish Passover holiday, the military said, as police tightened security after a rocket attack on Eilat.

Checkpoints would be closed to general traffic but “persons in need of medical attention, humanitarian aid or exceptional cases will be permitted to pass for care” with the army’s authorisation, it said in a statement.

The closures would be lifted on Sunday, April 8, “in accordance with security assessments,” the army said.

Israeli police have “heightened the level of security alert for the festival of Easter and Passover, especially in Jerusalem and its Old City,” said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld.

The force had “mobilised units to all over the country and especially Eilat, following yesterday’s attack,” he told AFP.

On Thursday, a rocket fired from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula slammed into the Israeli Red Sea resort of Eilat causing no injuries in the town packed with tourists ahead of a Jewish holiday.

The Passover holiday, during which Jews commemorate their biblical exodus from Egypt, will last for seven days beginning on Friday at sunset, the same day Christians observe Good Friday, marking Jesus’ crucifixion.

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