Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Thu 17.12.09, Afternoon

Maki S., Maya W. (a young guest from California), Nadim, Amira I. (reporting)

Translator:  Charles K.


14:00  Za’tara

No delays.  A huge poster:  “No entry to Bibi’s freeze inspectors.”


14:30  Huwwara checkpoint

We huddle up as we get out of Nadim’s car.  Rainy and cold.  A soldier comes over to talk to us and they yell at him to stop talking with us and move us back to the concrete block.

Suddenly soldiers shouting.  A young driver is pulled out of the car and about four soldiers push him to the end of the crossing.  He’s blindfolded with a strip of flannel and handcuffed.  Three soldiers hurry him, unseeing, to the booth below the tower.

People enter and leave the booth.  A car arrives.  Border Police; now they’re in charge.  The driver is inside and we can’t see what’s happening to him.  The soldiers say they asked him for identification, but “he started yelling, hit a soldier, butted him.”

The car was moved to the side; an elderly man and a young woman sat inside.  They got out after about 15 minutes and told us they’re from the village of Marda.  Everything began with shouts in Hebrew and we didn’t understand what was going on.

Maki on the phone to the DCO and, with the help of our friend Chana, in Ramat Gan, to brigade headquarters as well.  They deny everything:  “It never happened.”  We tell them we have photos documenting everything (Maya took the pictures; we’ll send them separately), and then the line changes:  the brigade instructs them to release the person who was handcuffed…that was after we’d already left.