Hebron, Sansana, South Hebron Hills, Tue 16.6.09, Morning
Sansana CP: By 07:00am the workers have all crossed. The first of the buses carrying prisoners' families on way to their visit is already on the Israeli side. We were surprised and left wondering at the absence of any sand-trucks.
There is no traffic, absolutely deserted. All roadblocks are in place and pillboxes are manned.
Samoa, Dahariya, Karame, Dura Al Fawwar, Dir Razeq, the gate below Beit Hagai, The Sheeps' Junction, Shuyuch-Hebron: all, unchanged.
At the entrance to Kiryat Arba the small illegal stronghold must have been dismantled this morning. The flags aren't flying there anymore.
Tel Rumeida, Tarpat, the Pharmacy, Patriarchs' Tombs' Cave, the House of Dispute, Beit Qfeisha CPs: all are painfully desolate. They are all manned and the gate at the Curve 160 CP is open but the mortar blocks are in place. There are no people and no detainees. The deserted town is heartbreaking.
No longer an apartheid road. Many Palestinian vehicles cross at the Olive Crossing towards Tarqumiya. The pillboxes are manned.
Tarqumiya-Idna CP: people there tell us that for the past six weeks or so about three times a day the "arrest of life" procedure is imposed - for forty minutes not a vehicle moves in any direction. How this procedure, which is so aggravating to so many, as we're constantly told, is supposed to prevent terrorism, we fail to see.
A new road is being paved with US funding in Zone B - from the old CP to Beit Kahil, so that the Palestinians don't have to use highway 35. We drove as far as it goes at present. We hope it would aid the Palestinian economy. For the moment the grocery at Tarkumiya-Idna is ordering less commodities as so few go by it.Today despair looked bearable...