Fast train between TA, J’lem to run through West Bank

November 7, 2010

Critics say the long-awaited railway violates int’l law because the construction has seized “occupied Palestinian land.” Ramot, where the train is due to have its Jerusalem terminus is beyond the 1949 armistice lines. Mevasseret Tziyon is beyond the 1949 armistice lines. Left-wing critics stated that the planned rail route violates international law because the construction has seized Palestinian land and won’t serve Palestinian residents of the West Bank. Israeli government officials say they have taken steps to ensure that the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem line would one day benefit Palestinians. Transport Ministry spokesman Avner Ovadiah said planning has begun on an extension that would connect Gaza with the city of Ramallah, the West Bank’s center of commerce and government. . But researcher Dalit Baum said that idea is “a cynical ploy that is only suggested in order to justify this train route as legal.” Baum wrote a report on the project published this week by an Israeli watchdog group, the Coalition of Women for Peace. Most of the six-kilometer (nearly four-mile) stretch of the railway inside the West Bank runs through tunnels. The high-speed train would cut the trip to 28 minutes between the seaside metropolis of Tel Aviv that is Israel’s business and cultural center, and the religious center and political capital of Jerusalem. The current train takes 90 minutes and is rarely used.
of course there will be friction. the armistice line is not a border…. and it should be ignored. Any unsustainable line from the past is not going to apply to the reality on the ground today.