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Israel bars all Palestinians after Tel Aviv attack

The US State Department said Israel should not punish innocent Palestinians for the attack

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The Israeli army said Friday that it was temporarily barring all Palestinians from entering Israel, stepping up already tough restrictions announced after Palestinian gunmen shot dead four Israelis in Tel Aviv.

“In accordance with government directives and the ongoing situation assessment, as of today crossing from the Gaza Strip and Judaea and Samaria (the West Bank) will be open to Palestinians only in medical and humanitarian cases,” a spokeswoman told AFP.

Meanwhile, the US State Department said on Thursday that Israel should not punish innocent Palestinians after the Israeli military revoked the travel permits for 83,000 Palestinians.

“We understand the Israeli government’s desire to protect its citizens ... and we strongly support that right, but we would hope that any measures it takes are designed to also take into consideration the impact on Palestinian citizens that are trying to go about their daily lives,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner told a news briefing.