'Anin, Mevo Dotan (Imriha), Reihan, Shaked, Thu 25.2.10, Morning
Translation: Bracha B.A.
A'anin Checkpoint 06:00
The checkpoint is open. People are being checked at the inner gate far from our view. Someone tells us that about 20 people have gone through. There are also women and children, since it is the Prophet's Birthday and there is no school.
We left at 06:20 before everyone went through.
Reihan-Barta'a Checkpoint 06:30
Workers are waiting for their rides and drivers are waiting for the workers. B., who works in the rug factory at Shahak, in the seamline zone, says that people are going through quickly.
B. also says that there is a holiday and businesses are closed and schools are on vacation, but private businesses are open. He also tells us that in the Shahak industrial zone they do not pay overtime or compensate for working at night or on Saturdays, but the workers are afraid of losing their jobs and consequently don't complain.
There are five vans loaded with agricultural goods in the Palestinian parking lot.
06:50 – Dotan Emricha Checkpoint
On our way to the checkpoint by the bridge we see that the metal gates are locked. Our friend A., the driver, is picking up workers to drive to the checkpoint. The pillboxes on the way are not manned. In the Bedouin village of Emricha we saw little girls in striped school dresses and school bags on their backs despite the holiday. We did not see any soldiers at the Mevo Dotan Checkpoint.
We entered the settlement of Mevo Dotan after the guard at the gate received the approval of the head of security to let us in. The public bus number 27 and the bus belonging to the company for Development of the Shomron also entered. Many of the houses in the settlement looked abandoned.
When we drove down from the settlement to the checkpoint we saw the soldiers. A few cars drove through towards Jenin and Emricha without being checked, and a tender also drove through without being checked.
On our way back we visited the settlement of Chermesh. A group of soldiers was waiting at the gate to be picked up. The houses here did not look abandoned, but a building project of several villas near the entrance had not been completed.
The 27 bus line also goes to Chermesh. When we left the head of security told us that a peace-loving teacher, just like us, was killed there. To our surprise the gate that had blocked the road to Kapin and Tulkarem was open. There were no soldiers there.
07:55 – Reihan Barta'a Checkpoint
All the vans have already gone in to be checked. The parking lot is filled with cars belonging to merchants in Barta'a. People continue to enter the terminal in groups of five. When six people arrive together five go in and the sixth waits outside. For a short time there is a line of ten people. Two women and six children go in. The children run ahead, appearing to feel at home at the checkpoint.
Our friend A., the driver, says that the gate near Chermesh has been open since the last Feast of the Sacrifice after being closed to four years. The opening of the gate has harmed his livelihood and that of other "unofficial" drivers, but has made things easier for others.
Shaked-Tura checkpoint 08:30
There is very little traffic as this hour. A car goes through to the West Bank and another is waiting to go through. Two cars are waiting to pass to the seamline zone.
08:40 – we left the checkpoint. On our way back we saw that the parking lot in Shaked has been broken up and the asphalt has been piled up. The land was returned to a resident of Yaabed who can now work the land that was lying under the asphalt. Despite this the owner of the land says that the army camp is still located on his land.