'Anabta, Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Jubara (Kafriat), Te'enim Crossing, Wed 8.7.09, Afternoon
Translation: Bracha B.A.
15:00 – Ras-Atiya (Gate 1351)
Traffic is light. Two soldiers are standing at the crossing, one is observing from the watchtower and apparently two are checking inside the small building where there is a magnometer. The sign reads: If there is a problem, call 02-9977733 (the number of the Liaison and Coordination Administration). Who will call?...
A truck is waiting to be released while the woman soldier is waiting - apparently – for the checkpoint commander to issue instructions. Tami talks with two soldiers, while another sends her outside the fence. She receives no answer.
The checkpoint is quiet as if everything is standing still and no one is moving. It is hot.
Two women pass through the gate with three babies – two in their arms and one walking. They live in Jaljulia (in Israel) and came to visit their sister who lives here in Ras-Atiya in the West Bank.
Ras Atiya is east of Jaljulia on the other side of the separation fence, and Jaljulia is west of Ras Atiya in Israel. In order to visit their sister they must travel to the enclave at Alphei Menasheh where and they have to get in and out of the car until they get to the gate at the checkpoint at Ras Atiya. We offered them a ride from the gate to the beginning of the enclave on Road 55 where Israelis can go (and they are Israelis). From there, hopefully, they will manage to find a taxi.
15:50 – Anabta
There is a very long line extending from the checkpoint to the junction. People are waiting. We go up to the checkpoint and a person in civilian clothing begins to shout at us: “There’s nothing for you to see here! Get out of here!” The soldiers do not say a word. |When we don’t leave he continues to shout but this time he argues loudly with the soldiers. It’s not clear about what. He appears to be a settler. The soldiers look like they are at a loss as to what to do about him and since they are not free to let cars through the line grows longer.
We call Grisha, the head of the Liaison and Coordination Administration in Qalqilya. The secretary says that they received orders not to talk with women from Machsom Watch. We can only talk with the head of the Liaison and Coordination Administration but he is not in. We then call the regiment commander. Dana from his office says that he is in a meeting with Grisha, and if we cannot talk to either of them she promises to talk to Grisha and take care of the matter.
At 16:15 the line begins to move and we leave.
16:25 – Te’enim Crossing (Near Jubara)
There are about 40 cars in the line to enter Israel. In “our” line there are 15. The soldiers to not have permission to let us enter the village. We cannot call the army or any other factor because there is no reception on our mobile phone.
16:35 – We gave up and left for Irtah.
16:45 – Irtah – Ephraim Crossing
A large group of women, children, and babies who are members of prisoners’ families are returning from visits to the prison. There is a long and crowded line of workers returning from work in Israel and they let the families through. One of the workers prevents them from going through despite the fact that they have already been waiting in line before they arrived. It is taken for granted that they go in first.
Meanwhile hundreds of workers arrive and it becomes more and more crowded. Nothing has changed regarding food regulations: people can still bring in two teaspoons of coffee in a plastic bag (not the original bag of coffee), a small bottle of olive oil, five pita breads, and no water. We wanted to photograph the spokesmen, but no one agreed because they are afraid of losing their permits to work in Israel.
Meanwhile we talked with a driver who bring workers from here to Ashkelon and back who told us about the difficulties experienced by the workers.
We left at 17:30.