Eliyahu Crossing, Ras 'Atiya, Wed 16.12.09, Morning

Micky P., Shira V. (reporting)

Translation: Galia S.

Ras Atiya
07:40 – We get to the checkpoint and wait for the bus that ferries the schoolchildren to the village. It arrives 15 minutes later and passes without any special problems. A number of people pass toward the village, as do some vehicles and a couple of farmers with a horse-drawn cart and, on showing documents, they, too, pass without any problems.

Eliyahu Passage / checkpoint 109
08:15 – A young man that we saw at the detaining post when we arrived told us that he has been there since 06:00 in the morning. The soldiers claim that he has been detained for about an hour and a half (which seems really to be the duration of the detention), the reason being some trouble that he has caused. From what the soldiers and he himself say, it turns out that although he has a permit to enter the seam-line zone, he tried to jump over the fence instead of crossing at the pedestrian' passage to avoid the congestion. Micky informs the DCO [District Coordination Office of the IDF Civil Administration that handles passage permits]. And half an hour later he is released and walks toward the pedestrians' passage where some 20 people are still swarming the entrance. The crossing is slow but flowing uninterrupted. The pedestrians here tell us that there was heavy congestion in the morning.

They also draw our attention to a small boy who, according to what they say, has been detained for half an hour. We see the boy waiting in the fenced plot around the inspection caravan of the pedestrians' passage.

He told us he is 11 years old and has been caught on the western side of the checkpoint while waiting for people to come and take him to work. It’s difficult to understand from him what exactly has happened and where he was from. Anyway, he is released within a short time to the western side.