Human rights groups are expressing serious concern tonight following news that the Israeli military has issued new regulations regarding the expulsion of “infiltrators” from the occupied West Bank.
Under the new regulations, any Palestinian, including those born in the West Bank or the Gaza Strip, could be classified as an “infiltrator” if they don’t have explicit permission from the Israeli military to reside in the territory.
This appears designed to set up for immediate deportation tens of thousands of Gazans, but analysts warn that even more troubling is that the ambiguous new definition of “infiltrator” is so broad that it could cover virtually every Palestinian.
Traditionally, people born in the West Bank have not had to seek explicit permission from the military to remain there, and it is not even clear, according to Israeli media, that the military is offering a residency permit which it would consider acceptable under the rules.
The Palestinian Authority condemned the announcement as “very dangerous,” and vowed to oppose the decision. The Palestinian Authority has sought to establish an independent state in a portion of the West Bank.