Tags: Israel | Pulls | Troops | Before | Zinni's | Visit

Israel Pulls Troops Before Zinni's Visit

Thursday, 03 January 2002 12:00 AM

They also have removed closures imposed on several Palestinian towns, a spokesman for the Israeli Defense Forces said.

He said the army had left the towns of Jenin, a Ramallah neighborhood and an area in Nablus by Thursday morning.

They also lifted the closures imposed on the towns of Hebron and Kalkilya. A roadblock near Tul Karem was re-opened as well, the IDF spokesman said.

The army had already lifted closures on Jericho and Bethlehem.

The Israeli moves coincide with a two-thirds reduction in the volume of Palestinian attacks on Israeli targets.

The latest Israeli withdrawal came hours before an expected visit to the region by a senior U.S. envoy, Anthony Zinni.

Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres said Wednesday he expected Zinni to, "Try to deepen the process of a cease-fire, together with facilitating conditions in the territories to make life easier."

In his last trip, Zinni sought a series of confidence-building measures including the easing of Israeli restrictions on Palestinian workers. The Israeli government has agreed in principle to remove some of these restrictions.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon summoned Defense Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer and senior Israeli commanders and ordered them to remove some roadblocks and closures of Palestinian areas.

Copyright 2002 by United Press International. All rights reserved.

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They also have removed closures imposed on several Palestinian towns, a spokesman for the Israeli Defense Forces said. He said the army had left the towns of Jenin, a Ramallah neighborhood and an area in Nablus by Thursday morning. They also lifted the closures imposed...
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Thursday, 03 January 2002 12:00 AM
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