Hamra, Tayasir, Wed 24.6.09, Afternoon

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Keren M., Yifat D. (reporting)

Visitors from the Committee Against House Demolitions

We visited a number of families following the massive demolition of encampments in recent weeks, demolition orders that were served, signs placed alongside every tent on the Allon Road and the route to Tayasir proclaiming the areas to be "military," and the harassment of shepherd families in the last period.

1. The families that did not get demolition orders were warned verbally that they must leave their lands.

2. Next to Kfir Brigade base we saw scores of concrete cubes which the same legend as on those next to the encampments, declaring a closed military area – the same kind of cubes as those used to block vehicle entry throughout the West Bank. We assume that the army intends to use them to block tractors from entering the encampments along the Allon and Tayasir roads, thereby making the transfer more efficient.

We entered Rotem settlement where one of the residents explained that they are building houses outside the fence. We observed the settlement of Maskiot where a number of caravans are positioned next to a crane, and maybe this is also new construction.

15:00 Tayasir Checkpoint
The passengers from two cars are waiting to be checked en route from Nablus to the Valley. The soldiers interrogate the transients, young and old, regarding their place of residence, their activities and whatever comes to the soldiers’ minds. The Palestinians have to answer every question. The drivers continue to be publicly humiliated without any logic by the instruction to expose their bellies and pirouette before reentering the cars to approach the soldiers.
The passengers are forced to cross the checkpoint on foot and in pairs, threes or whatever the soldiers decide at the moment.

16:30 Hamra Checkpoint
Three cars in each direction. The soldiers check one direction at a time. The dogs that the soldiers are rearing still circulate in the hut, providing yet another block in the way of pedestrians. Here too the soldiers ask personal questions, in a language foreign to the transients, and here too the drivers are forced to expose their bellies.