Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel's barrier in the
West Bank will not be taken down, despite a drop in violence in the
Mr. Netanyahu told Israeli's parliament
Wednesday that the situation was calm in the West Bank because of the
barrier and an improvement on the part of Palestinian security services.
remarks came after Israel's Maariv newspaper ran a report saying
Palestinian officials had pressed the United States to push for the
dismantling of the barrier because of the West Bank's improving
Israel began erecting the barrier during the
height of a Palestinian uprising, saying the project was necessary to
stop suicide bombers from entering Israeli cities. Palestinians say
the barrier's purpose is to grab land that could deny them a viable
The International Court of Justice issued
a non-binding decision in 2004, saying the barrier was illegal because
it crossed occupied territory.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.