Since 2001 we have observed dozens of army checkpoints on paved and unpaved roads in the West Bank, the Jordan Valley and along the Separation Fence; Civil Administration offices which grant permits to Palestinians; and military courts trying Palestinian prisoners. We stand at the checkpoints observing the behavior of soldiers and Palestinians without interfering, intervening only when soldiers behave offensively to Palestinians. Then we try to speak to the soldiers themselves or telephone...
Beit Ummar, Bethlehem (300), Etzion DCL, Nabi Yunis, Mon 19.3.12, Morning
The checkpoint is at the entrance to the village.
There were no police on duty at any DCL’s today, so we could not refer anyone to them.
7.00 am, Bethlehem - Checkpoint 300: many people complained about conditions today though one man said it ‘isn’t as bad as yesterday.’ One woman coming out said that there were a number of women and children trying to get through but their special gate was closed. We phoned the hot-line.
7.30 am, Husan: two armoured cars made their way from the taxi rank towards Husan.
8.09 am, Etzion DCL: a dozen men and two women were waiting outside for the office which opened soon after. They had all come for magnetic cards.
8.30 am, Beit Ummar: five soldiers were standing next to an armoured car at the (disused) gas station. They eyed us warily, especially as clients approached, but did not come to us. Then three of them moved off up towards the village, the other two remaining.
Two cases of permit refusals .
9.30 am, Nabi Yunis: an arranged meeting for someone to pay an instalment on his fine (which machsom watch does on his behalf).
On our way back, we stopped at the house of a family whose 18 year old, mentally handicapped nephew, had been arrested together with his slightly older cousin, for allegedly throwing stones. They have been kept at Offer Prison and their case will come up only in April. Apart from the anxiety of having a son in that condition being kept in a cell, the family was having trouble in sending him money for use in the prison canteen. Chaya made a number of phone calls to solve the problem. The family also complained about the body searches that women have to undergo at camp Offer. In addition, the boy’s uncle who needs to accompany the father to the court walks on crutches and has great difficulty with all the checks. Chaya managed to speak to an officer who promised to help when he comes to the trial.