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Israel Expels Palestinians to Gaza for Aiding in Bomb Attack - 2002-09-04

Israel has expelled two Palestinians from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip for allegedly helping their brother plan a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv.

The two Palestinians, a brother and a sister, entered the Gaza Strip, at an area known as the Netzarim Junction.

Israeli troops transported the pair to the area along back roads.

Reporters had expected to see the two arrive through the Erez crossing at the northern end of the Gaza Strip, which had been declared a closed military zone. But they were taken through a different crossing and, according to their lawyer, left at a gas station south of Gaza City.

Kifah and Intisar Ajouri are accused of helping their brother Ahmed, who allegedly sent a suicide bomber to launch an attack in Tel Aviv in July.

Israel gave them each about $200 as "an adjustment grant" for their two year exile in Gaza.

The two had emotional farewells with relatives in the West Bank before being transported in an Israeli military convoy.

Family members told reporters that Kifah, a house painter and Intisar, a pharmacist, would make every effort to adjust to their new lives in Gaza.

The expulsion follows an Israeli Supreme Court ruling that the army could initiate the transfer, as a form of punishment to discourage Palestinian terrorism.

Human rights groups and the Palestinian Authority have denounced the move, saying it is in a breach of international law.