Eyal Crossing, 'Anabta, Qalqiliya, Te'enim Crossing, Mon 20.7.09, Morning
06:20 Eyal Crossing
There are hundreds of Palestinians in the parking lot and the surrounding area waiting for rides to work. The passage today was faster than yesterday (Sunday) which is always a very difficult morning because many more people with permits to remain in Israel all week come through on Sundays. According to one of the workers there were 6-7 inspection points open today.
Everyone is complaining about the overcrowding in the rooms and everyone is afraid of the damage caused by the new x-ray machine. Nothing has changed regarding food and drink: people can bring in two small cans of tuna fish, sugar in a small bag, a handful of olives, and there was an argument over the size of the bottles of water people can bring. Frozen water bottles are not permitted.
6:30 A Jewish contractor complains that two of his workers came through but 4 are still inside since 5:45 and he is being delayed. He says that life is being made difficult for Palestinians for no reason and there are more and more checks. A Palestinian who was waiting next to the Liaison and Coordination Administration offices agrees. He comes from a village near Jericho and pays NIS 80 to travel back and forth and today he missed his work cay because his palm print did not register because of his work laying tiles.
6:50 – There are fewer workers coming out but there are still workers in the parking lot who have been delayed for more than an hour. The parking lot is emptying out.
7:00 – We left.
7:05 – At the Tzufin Checkpoint
We see Palestinians crossing to work in their fields or in the settlements. At the Qalqilya checkpoint there is a soldier in position at the side of the road but traffic is flowing freely.
8:05 – Anabta
The exit from the city is completely open. Each car is stopped several meters in front of the entrance to the city, drives forward and stops again next to the soldier’s booth, and continues. There are no delays. The checkpoint commander is attentive and polite.
8:35 – After a short conversation about the situation with a taxi driver whom we know and with a 14-year old from Raamin helping his grandfather sell dates who likes basketball, we continue on our way.
8:50 – Jubara (Te’enim Crossing)
A bad-tempered sergeant asks for our ID cards, checks the trunk of the car, and is amazed that we want to enter the village. He asks the military policewoman if we are allowed and after a telephone call to clarify this he opens the gate. We go up to Checkpoint 753. We see from far away that they have repaired the large hold in the road where the A-Ras Checkpoint was and ask if we can go through and see the repairs. To our surprise we are allowed but we have to undergo another ID check and the trunk is checked again as well. We drive around and go back in 15 minutes or less and what a surprise – we have to be checked again…even our purses are checked!!
We go down to the gate and honk the horn and the bad-tempered sergeant arrives accompanied by the military policewoman. Yes - we are once again checked, including our bags and there is criticism regarding the dates that we preferred to by from the Palestinians. Our sense of humor is now gone.
We returned home. Nothing terrible happened, but it was simply disgusting.