'Azzun, 'Azzun 'Atma, Eliyahu Crossing, Habla, Tue 2.3.10, Morning
07:30 Habala Agricultural Gate
It's the day after the closure in the Territories, Thursday to Monday, the Purim Closure.This gate serves the persons who pass to their agricultural land that is situated beyond the Separation Wall that surrounds the village of Habala, to the Seamline.The gate is opened by the army for an hour, in the morning (06:45), at noon (11:45), and in the evening (16:45).
At 07:30 about 50 people are waiting, there are also a few carts hitched to a donkey or a horse. They enter the checking room one by one; the queue hardly advances at all, a person who came out towards us told us that he has been waiting in the queue for two hours. People arrive at 05:30 in order to pass at the CP as early as possible, but the checking process is extremely slow! We too are witness to this. We called the DCO and a pleasant very young girl (impossible not to come to this conclusion) answers that she'll try to find out. We left at 08:10, the gate was still open, and there were about 20 people waiting.
08:15 Eliyahu Gate
25 workmen are waiting at the turnstiles to pass on westwards. We did not tarry as we intended to get to Azzun Atma in the north and to be in time to see the morning problems.
This is our first time at the village of Azzun. There are many closed shops; very few people are around. We also passed the villages of Tholat, Saniriya and Beit Amin.
08:45 Azzun Atma
We reached the northern CP of Azzun Atma, which we have heard was problematic. There is a watch tower and a checking room, and 4 soldiers outside. We arrived too late to see the workmen who pass here in the morning.
The Sha'arey Tiqva settlement is practically linked here to the security road and the separation wall, and it seems that this CP, between Azzun Atma and the adjoining villages and the town of Kilkilya, is here because of this settlement.
Two cars arrive; their passengers descend and go to the blocked turnstile. A soldier outside shouts to open it. A girl soldier inside opens it and they enter the checking room one by one. The cars are being checked thoroughly, the doors and the luggage compartment are opened. Other cars arrive and pass. A Palestinian lets his donkey pass ("he knows the way home by himself").
We left at 09:30. Next time we shall arrive earlier.