West Bank visitors attracted to hotel adorned by Banksy art

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Guests at the Walled Off Hotel in the occupied West Bank town of Bethlehem on Tuesday admired the works of British street artist Banksy, whose wall paintings and other works adorn the establishment.

Three Banksy prints go under the hammer in Paris on Wednesday, a first auction of his works since a print that sold in London earlier this month for $1.37 million and was half shredded in a stunt after the hammer fell.

A staff looks on as a statue of a chimpanzee bell-boy is seen at the entrance of Banksy's the Walled Off hotel in Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Mussa Qawasma
A graffiti work painted by street artist Banksy showing an Israeli soldier and masked Palestinian youth having a pillow fight, is seen in the Walled Off hotel in Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Mussa Qawasma
A view shows Banksy's the Walled Off hotel and a section of the Israeli barrier in Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Mussa Qawasma
An artwork is seen in the presidential suite in Banksy's the Walled Off hotel in Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank, October 23, 2018. REUTERS/Mussa Qawasma

The Walled Off Hotel is situated a few meters (yards) from Israel’s separation barrier and Banksy has described the guesthouse as having the worst view of any hotel in the world. Every room looks out at the forbidding wall.

Israel says the barrier that cuts through the West Bank, which is part wall and part fence, is a bulwark against Palestinian attackers. Palestinians see it as a symbol of oppression.

BETHLEHEM, West Bank (Reuters)

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