Smugglers are using basic tools such as ladder and rope to sneak Palestinians through Israel’s security fence, according to Israel’s Channel Two News.
The fence, which is less than a decade old, was built to prevent terror attacks and keep out intruders. It has been the subject of much legal wrangling and debate from critics who say it violates international law, and is a barrier to peace with the Palestinian Authority. Nevertheless, the Israeli government has strongly defended the fence, and claims it has prevented attacks against Israeli citizens.
The fence’s part concrete walls and barbed wire are a familiar sight to Israelis and foreign travelers. But according to smugglers, the barrier is no match for those armed with 50 shekels and very basic equipment.
Channel Two News quotes one smuggler, Ahmad, who claims he can get 35-40 people across the barrier and into Jerusalem in a single day (50 on Saturdays). In order to accomplish this, Ahmad simply climbs up a wall near his Palestinian home, watches for Israeli police or military patrols, and then drops a rope down to the Israeli side. When the coast is clear, those waiting to be smuggled climb up the ladder, down the rope, and into Israeli territory.
In addition to scaling the fence, others try to pass underneath or through the barbed-wire fencing. According to Ahmad, many of those who fail to cross the first time often try again in hopes of finding work, reuniting with family, or perhaps for more nefarious purposes.