Palestinians easily scale Israel's $1.9 billion security fence

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

TEL AVIV Palestinian infiltrators have succeeded in breaching Israel's new security fence and barrier system.

Israeli security sources said Palestinian infiltrators have scaled the four-meter high concrete fence by using a simple ladder.

The Israeli project calls for the establishing of a 730-kilometer fence at a cost of $1.9 billion. Most of the project consists of a concrete wall or chain-link fence with sensors, cameras and military patrols.

In one case, the sources said, Arab infiltrators brought a ladder to the fence in the northeastern West Bank. They quickly scaled the fence and entered a waiting car that took them to Israeli Arab villages. The infiltrators were deemed as Palestinians looking for work.

The sources said an Israeli command center spotted the infiltrators but could not respond quickly enough to capture them. They said this constitutes a breach in security that must be resolved.

Since the fence was built, the sources said about two infiltrations a month take place from the West Bank through the area of the fence. Before the fence was built, the number of infiltrations was reported at 300 a month.

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