GUSH ETZION, West Bank – Israeli military officials say they are easing restrictions on the movement of Palestinian Christians in the West Bank for the holiday season.
Lt. Col. Eyad Sirhan says thousands of West Bank Christians will be issued monthlong permits to enter Israel to visit Jerusalem's holy sites. Normally only small numbers of West Bank Palestinians can enter Israel, mostly for pressing needs. Sirhan is in charge of civilian affairs in the region of Bethlehem.
Israel has in recent years allowed limited numbers of Christians to enter for the holiday season. But Sirhan says the quota system has been abolished.
Defense officials say only 300 of Gaza's 3,000 Christians will be allowed into Israel for the holiday.