World Bank Urges Israel To Ease West Bank Limits

"The World Bank warned on Monday that continued economic growth in the occupied West Bank would depend on Israel taking further steps to lift restrictions on movement. ""The fiscal position of the (Palestinian Authority) remains precarious. Despite evidence of economic growth in the West Bank, its sustainability remains in question,"" the Bank said ahead of a donors conference in Madrid. The warning came a day after the International Monetary Fund said the West Bank economy grew 8.5 percent in 2009 following Palestinian reforms, the easing of some restrictions, and nearly two billion dollars of foreign aid. Both bodies have cautioned that those gains could be in danger if Israel does not remove more of the hundreds of roadblocks and checkpoints it maintains in the West Bank, which it says are necessary for security. The World Bank recommended ""that continued easing of the economic restrictions on the West Bank, and lifting the Gaza blockade, remain a top priority for the governmen