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...
Jordan Vally, Gochya, Hamra, Tayasir, Sun 27.3.11, Afternoon
Gochiya checkpoint, which is opposite Beqaot settlement, is a metal bar blocking a dirt road in the Jordan Valley that prevents residents living in the eastern Jordan Valley from travelling freely to the western Jordan Valley and back again. This checkpoint, which is supposed to open only three times a week for half an hour (and usually doesn’t open at all), prevents residents living in the eastern Jordan Valley from accessing the town of Tamun, for example, which serves as a regional urban center. They’re prevented from maintaining contact with family members, obtaining medical treatment, getting to school and shopping, etc. Children from the eastern Jordan Valley are compelled to live during the week with families in Tamun to insure they are able to attend school regularly. The locals must make long detours, and risk severe punishment if they’re caught. In order to prevent them from bypassing the checkpoint, the IDF dug a series of long, deep ditches around the checkpoint and created very high earthen berms.
Translated by Yael S.
On the way by Ariel we tried entering Salpeet, but the entrance is closed and the female soldier who is on guard duty told us that is is A zone.
1:45 - Hamra checkpoint
There is no line, a vehicle arrives and following a 2-minutes inspection is free to proceed. A fellow who came out of inspection tells us that his bag was opened and all books were thrown out of it and his wallet was opened as well. While we were standing there cars and buses which were parked in the direction of Nablus were not inspected.
2:20 - Tayasir checkpoint
We arrived at a change of shifts. Inspection came to halt which created a line of 9 cars. One of the drivers said that he has been waiting for half an hour. Following the resumption of inspection the line vanishes within a few minutes.
3:05 - Gochya checkpoint
No military vehicle on site. We began making phone calls to the Jerico DCO and its people (Idan no longer works for the DCO) Finally at 3:35 a military Jeep arrived, but the soldiers refused to talk to us. No Palestinian on site.
3:45- We left.
4:40 - Ma'ale Ephraim checkpoint
The post is manned on its Eastern side, and vehicles are inspected.
Huwwara checkpoint is open but we saw a soldier at the lookout post making a turn to Wisconsin road. At the turn to Yitshar a military Jeep was standing. On our way to Huwwara we saw a military Jeep making rounds in the village's alleys.
The post is manned but they do not inspect vehicles.
5:00 - Kifle Hares
There is inspection at the gate and a lookout from the tower.