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banner image: Guide to the West Bank barrier


Most of the barrier is wire fence at least 3m high, reinforced with a ditch and coils of razor wire.

In many built-up areas, considered a higher risk by Israel, it is an 8m high concrete wall with watchtowers.

Gates at various points in the barrier allow farmers to reach fields, pupils to go to schools, etc. They are controlled by troops checking their Israeli-issued permits.

Nov 2000: PM Ehud Barak approves plan for barrier in part of north and central West Bank.

Jun 2001: Committee set up by PM Ariel Sharon recommends a version of Mr Barak's plan.

April 2002: After a wave of suicide bombings Israeli cabinet decides to build barrier. Israeli forces begin requisitioning land.

Oct 2003: Full planned route published.

June 2004: Israeli High Court orders route change around Jerusalem on humanitarian grounds.

July 2004: International Court of Justice declares barrier illegal in an advisory ruling.

Feb 2005: Israeli government publishes revised barrier route.

Aug 2005: Cabinet approves final route around Jerusalem.

Sep 2005: Supreme Court orders government to reconsider route near Qalqilya.

Mar 2006: Ehud Olmert wins election with plan to set Israel's borders unilaterally along barrier route, if talks fail.

Graphic showing the construction of both fence and wall sections of the West bank barrier.


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