Apparently bypass roads, checkpoints, land annexation and Wall construction, which turned the city of Qalqilia into a prison housing 45 thousand Palestinians, were not enough for the Israeli government. Yet,Israeli soldiers and police have lately been imposing restrictions on the Palestinians who come to shop in Qalailia living in Palestinian villages inside Israeli borders such as Kafr Kasem, Jaljoulia, Atirah, and Taybeh.
The Israeli police is always present at the entrance of the city, issues fines and detains cars and residents for several hours.
Shoppers are forced to walk into the closed city and must have permits or proof of residency to be able to enter Qalqilia.
The Secretary of Qalqilia mayor, Hashem Al Masri, informed PNN that preventing Arab shoppers from entering the city is killing what is left of its economic life.
The labor market is paralyzed from closures, while Israeli forces have confiscated agricultural lands. After this, the city residents came to rely on a small amount of commerce from, as Al Masri put it, "our people inside Israel."
He added that the Municipality revenues will also be affected from the latest restrictions since most of the visitors to the Zoo are Palestinians coming from inside Israeli borders.
A merchant and Chamber of Commerce member, Ahmed Jaidi, said that the Israeli soldiers’ harassment of shoppers has led to additional store closures.
He added that during the last Intifada 600 shops in Qalqilia were closed because of the deteriorating economic situation. Tens are threatened to close as a result of the systematic Israeli policy of destroying the Palestinian economy.
A city merchant, Omar Nofal, said, "We are depressed from these latest measures especially as Israel always aims to isolate the city."
Qaliqilia is in the northwestern West Bank, is surrounded by the Wall with access into the rest of the West Bank, or agricultural lands and schools on the other side, is through a gate system controlled by Israeli soldiers occupying the area.