Israel arrests 177 'illegal' Palestinian workers

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Tel Aviv, March 11: Israeli police on Friday said 177 "illegal" Palestinian workers were arrested overnight, on the third day of a crackdown following a fatal terror attack.

Police spokeswoman Luba Samri said the workers were detained because they entered Israel without permits, along with 26 people who were accused of driving them from the West Bank to Israel, Xinhua news agency reported.

Israel Map

Samri added that over the past 24 hours, police and paramilitary Border Police raided 341 construction sites, where most of the Palestinian workers are employed, and other places known as workers sleeping sites.

On Wednesday and Thursday, Israeli forces arrested 250 other Palestinians without permits in addition to 30 employers and people who accommodate them.

The massive crackdown was part of new measures that the Israeli government imposed in the wake of a stabbing attack in Jaffa, south of capital Tel Aviv on Tuesday, which claimed the life of Taylor Force, a 29-year-old US Student, the second American citizen who was killed in the six-month violence between Israel and the Palestinians.

Force was stabbed to death by Bashar Massalha, a 22-year-old resident of the West Bank town Qalqilya who entered Israel without papers. He had wounded 11 others before police shot and killed him.

The incident occurred as US Vice President Joe Biden was visiting the nearby Peres Centre for Peace. His two-day visit, which ended on Thursday, triggered a spate of attacks.

IANS

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