Israel eases West Bank closure after terror attack

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JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli officials have lifted a closure of the West Bank imposed last week after a terrorist drive-by shooting that killed three Israelis.

As part of the relaxed closure, an additional 10,000 Palestinian workers were to be issued work permits, bringing the total number of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip allowed to work in Israel to 35,000.

The slayings of Ze'ev Munk, his father, Uri, and his wife, Rachel, on a road near Beit Shemesh put into question a key promise of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's election campaign: his vow to provide increased security for Israelis.

Security forces believe a Hebron-based cell for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine carried out the attack Friday of last week as well as a similar drive-by shooting last month in which an Israeli couple, Yaron and Efrat Unger, died.

Doctors at three Israeli hospitals said Monday that they had successfully transplanted the organs of Ze'ev Munk, who died Sunday of wounds sustained in the attack.

Munk's heart and lungs were transplanted to a 20-year-old man from Dimona, his kidneys and pancreas donated to a 37-year-old Beersheva woman and his liver transplanted to a 55-year-old woman from Beit Shemesh.

Maj. Gen. Gabi Ofir, the commander of Israeli forces in the West Bank, met this week with the head of Palestinian police to discuss what he said were recent violations of the Israeli-Palestinian accords by the self-rule security forces.