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Report: Israel to operate 'Palestinian-only' bus routes
Published Sunday 03/03/2013 (updated) 04/03/2013 18:21
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Palestinian men walk past a section of Israel's controversial barrier
as they make their way to cross at Qalandiya checkpoint.(Reuters/file)
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma'an) -- An Israeli bus company on Monday will begin operating Palestinian-only lines from the West Bank to Israel as a result of complaints from settlers, Israeli media reported Sunday.

The new bus routes will be operated by Israel's Afikim company and take Palestinian workers from the Eyal crossing, near Qalqiliya, to Israel.

Israel's Ministry of Transportation defended the plan by saying that buses traveling in the area were overcrowded and there were tensions between settlers and Palestinians, the Israeli daily Ynet reported.

Many settlers complain that Palestinian passengers are a security risk, an Israeli transport ministry source told Ynet.

A Palestinian who holds a permit to enter Israel is legally allowed to use public transportation and can therefore travel on any bus route he or she chooses, Haaretz reports.

While Israeli transport officials are not officially calling them segregated buses, Ynet says the new bus lines have only been publicly advertised in Palestinian villages, with the notices in Arabic only.

The proposal to implement separate bus lines was first presented by Israel's Ministry of Transportation last November.

"The attempt at bus segregation is appalling, and the current arguments about 'security needs' and 'overcrowding' must not be allowed to camouflage the blatant racism of the demand to remove Palestinians from buses," B'Tselem executive director Jessica Montell said at the time.

Last November, Israeli police ordered Palestinian workers off a bus at the request of settlers.

Settlement mayor Ron Nachman wrote on his Facebook page last year that he was working with the Israeli army, police and transport ministry to stop Palestinians boarding buses that go to Ariel.

"All of them are working on this problem, and we hope that they will soon find a solution to the reality that is bothering our people," he said.
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1 ) Mitri I. Musleh / Canada
03/03/2013 15:04
Wouldn’t be easier to establish a two-state solution rather than risk a South African outcome in the very near future?

2 ) Arnold / Canada
03/03/2013 15:08
It smacks of fear as well as apartheid.

3 ) JoeFattal / USA
03/03/2013 16:04
In the US there is special bus that carries Ultra-Orthodox Jews in the borough of Brooklyn. Women ride in the back and men in the front of the bus. I guess its "Done unto others when someone done unto you''. That's one of mine. Describe perfectly Israel reaction on many issues.

4 ) BDS / Canada
03/03/2013 16:13
This smacks of more subjugation and apartheid. Bussing the illegal settlers back to where they came from can easily solve the settler's problems.

5 ) jjvanka / NL
03/03/2013 16:22
It may help to counter overcrowding, but Palestinians are free to travel by regular bus. No Apartheid (yet).

6 ) Israel must be evacuated from / palestine
03/03/2013 17:02
Yes settlers are security risks for the Palestinians. !!!!!!!! The settlers are the illness the parasites IN PALESTINE. They not only who are to blame, The whole Zionist government is Apartheid, racism and terrorism guilty. What is the difference between Hitler and the Zionist ????There is no difference this is ethnic, race cleansing. The settlers must be evacuated from Palestine, of course with their own buses.

7 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
03/03/2013 17:17
None of you address the reality of this article - many Palestinians are allowed to go work in Israel. The other reality is that Palestinians have committed numerous war crimes by blowing up Israeli buses. We want peace. We are also not stupid. The security fence went up and suicide bombings went to zero. That is a fact. #4 we should send you illegal Canadian settlers back to where you came. Are you going to lead by example? No, you like your successful occupation, don't you?

8 ) Afikin is a PRIVATE BUS COmp/ / their mgr said
03/03/2013 17:20
the attitude of the Palestinians on some lines is simply INTOLERABLE he was afraid of the reaction in the world about "APARTHEID ISRAEL" but he said that his customers REFUSE TO CONTINUE TO DRIVE with the RUDE and VIOLENT PALESTINIANS! Look in the MIRROR ARABS!

9 ) maan / palestine
03/03/2013 17:41
their mgr said/ you are wrong a bout Palestinians we Palestinians are the real owners of this land and you have nothing to be doing in our land we aren't violent nor we are rude, in fact these words are internationally used to describe you.

10 ) Mel / USA
03/03/2013 18:38
Disgusting! Listen up Obama?STOP THE CHECKS! DIVEST! RECALL WHO THE 1ST BUS TERRORISTS were,in Palestine? ZIONISTS! Rosa Parks,MLK Jnr,U & me,wouldn't be allowed to ride on scumbag Zionist Israel's BIGOT-buses!Yet,violent Jews/Zionists from all over the world,can ride the WHITE-SUPREMACIST buses of Ziostan ISRAEL!?!Screw that,Obama.And,all our Congress-coward Ziophiles/evangelicals(who FUNDED Ariel etc)should B ASHAMED of siding with racist/bigotted Zionism,over the WORDS of Jesus,& HUMANITY!

11 ) @ Mitri-1 / USA
03/03/2013 20:45
There is already "a two-state solution", and NO "risk of a South African outcome", since: - Israel became a state in 1948, and - Palestine became a (non-member) state in 2012 (at least within the UN General Assembly), and THE DISPUTED LANDS (E. Jerusalem & Areas C/E1) CAN CONTINUE-ON AS DISPUTED FOREVER.

12 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:22
Just think; maybe someday Palestinians will be permitted to sit in the back of the SAME bus! Israel leaps forward into Jim Crow...

13 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:23
Top Brian #7: ' The other reality is that Palestinians have committed numerous war crimes by blowing up Israeli buses...' When was the last time a Palestinian blew up a bus? And don't try to cite that rather obvious Black Op that happened last year.

14 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:26
To Mitri #1: 'Wouldn’t be easier to establish a two-state solution rather than risk a South African outcome in the very near future?' You put your finger on it. It might not be best to say so, but if the Palestinians can just AVOID 'the two-state solution,' eventually they'll get it all. Indeed, not so eventually. Israel's hurtling towards the brink as it is. A few discreet shoves, and this could all be over in a decade.

15 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:30
To Arnold #2 'It smacks of fear as well as apartheid.' Given that bus bombings don't actually HAPPEN, there are two possible explanations for this. Either (a) the 'fear' is a pretense, or (b) the 'fear' is simply the awareness of how richly settlers deserve such a fate.

16 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:32
Of course, the difficulty is going to be reliably distinguishing between the Master Race and the untermenschen. Yellow stars? That's how the Nazis kept their undesirables off the buses.

17 ) Colin Wright / USA
03/03/2013 22:34
'A Palestinian who holds a permit to enter Israel is legally allowed to use public transportation and can therefore travel on any bus route he or she chooses, Haaretz reports.' In theory, of course.

18 ) Outlier / USA
03/03/2013 22:57
Sad and counterproductive.

19 ) gabi / australia
04/03/2013 00:38
Brian Cohen - I have said it many times but you just don't listen. Canada, the US and Australia ALL GIVE THEIR INDIGENOUS RESIDENTS THE VOTE. That is a big difference. Get it now? And you have a habit of justifying all of Israel's actions by telling lies. As Goebbels or someone like him once said: "If you tell a lie often enough people will believe it." You have learned that lesson well.

20 ) Reader / from Edmonton
04/03/2013 00:54
The Israelis are afraid. They'd be crapping their pants without those guns they wave around. And they should be afraid. Terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism will see its day in court. The UN resolutions will be honoured by the rogue state. The occupier will be expunged from Palestine. Return to Israel while you can still make on your own. You made your Israel in 1948: return to it.

21 ) Reader / from Edmonton
04/03/2013 01:14
disputed lands: Israeli-speak for occupied Palestine, a mythical construct used to confuse fools. Israel declared legal borders in UN partition in 1948. Nothing has changed those legal borders and nothing can without the approval of the Palestinians. Resolution after resolution, convention upon convention all agree. Israel is building outside its borders on lies and gall. Go home and stop waving your guns in our faces.

22 ) Rami / Palestine
04/03/2013 10:37
#7 How convenient of you to discuss "numerous war crimes" perpetrated by Palestinians. When will you also discuss your own war crimes? There are atleast 66 years of well documented cases to cite as examples up to and including last weeks murder of Arafat Jaradat or would you rather not go there?
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