Intro TAXIS TRADERS WAITING AREA ID CHECKS ISRAELI SECURITY MEDICAL CASES ISRAELI SETTLEMENT Full Coverage

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Taxis

Israeli security measures mean that travelling from one Palestinian town to another is seldom simple.

Military checkpoints such as the one illustrated above allow vehicles with Israeli registration plates through, but some roadblocks block all traffic apart from pedestrians. Palestinian-registered vehicles are not usually allowed to leave Palestinian areas.

Either way, most Palestinians take a shared taxi to the checkpoint, walk across it, and pick up another taxi on the other side.

This has significantly increased the cost of travel for Palestinians. Taxis often take tortuous routes through Israeli-controlled areas to avoid other roadblocks, pushing up prices further.

Lorries delivering food and other supplies are also allowed to pass through military checkpoints, though sometimes with lengthy delays which can cause cargoes of fresh produce to spoil.


Ahmed Kassem had hired this private taxi to pick him up on the north side of the Surda roadblock, which is on the north side of Ramallah, on his way home from a heart check-up in the town.

He has to walk 10 minutes uphill in the midday heat to pass through the roadblock, and is very concerned about his health.

He told BBC News Online he expected the journey 20km in total - would take another three hours to complete.

"I think the Israelis do this because they want to make us feel like foreigners in our own land. They just want us to leave," he said.

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