Eliyahu Crossing, Habla, Jit, Shave Shomron, Mon 26.7.10, Morning

Observers: Ronny S., Nina S. (reporting), Charles K. (translator)

6:30  Eliyahu crossing – More than 30 people waiting on line.  Two women arrived, and the men let them go through immediately.  It takes about a minute per person to cross.  The Palestinians said the checkpoint opened at 5 AM and remains open every day until 7 PM.  A horse-drawn cart loaded with vegetables arrives from Qalqilya.  It isn’t allowed through, and sent back to whence it came.
6:30  Habla crossing – The Palestinians say the crossing opened on time (06:45).  People go through in groups of three (once they went through in groups of five), and the next group of three isn’t allowed to approach the revolving gate and wait (as they could until recently) until the previous ones exit the checkpoint.  They have to wait at a distance (at a line indicated by a whip lying on the ground).  Therefore, the next group of inspectees approaches the checkpoint only after the previous group has exited.  This slows down the crossing and makes it inefficient.
7:40 Flamiya 927 crossing – A sleepy place – almost no-one going through.  Access is via a good road off the road north to Jayyous.  The soldiers say the checkpoint opens at 5:15 AM and closes at 5:15 PM.  An old man arrives on a donkey cart and goes through quickly, after him a farmer on a donkey who also goes through quickly.  We see people working in the fields on the Israeli side of the fence.
8:00 Jayyous checkpoint – Reached via a dirt road off the northern entry road to Jayyous.  Open from 7:30 AM to 8:15 AM.  Afterwards the soldiers open a gate located south of Jayyous.  It wasn’t open when we were there.
8:40  Shvut Ami – No sign of life; only signs about Itai Zar.
8:45  Jit junction – Blocked to the east (toward Huwwara) by the army.  More than 20 cars waiting.  Many begin to turn around to find another route, apparently via Jit and south from Funduq or via Nablus.
8:50  The commander asks what we’re doing here, but is called to the phone and leaves with some of the soldiers and an ambulance that was also here, heading east.  The road remains closed.  Meanwhile, all the cars have left, and now the soldiers turn back all the Palestinian cars.  Israeli cars go through.
9:30  Shavei Shomron – The road is closed.  A few laborers working on the road say that tomorrow they’ll be finished – will it then open?  Let’s hope so.
9:50  Jit junction – Still closed, and all the Palestinian cars are sent back.
At the entrance to Qedumim, there are army personnel “supervising” from the roadside.