Reihan, Shaked, Sun 4.7.10, Afternoon
Translator: Charles K.
15:40 - 17:00
15:40 The checkpoint is quiet, only 2 cars with passengers coming through from the West Bank to the seam zone.
Reihan checkpoint – 16:00
A car on the way to the West Bank detained at the vehicle checkpoint; lengthy documents inspection. We weren’t able to find out what the problem is. After 20 minutes it went through. Many families with children coming from Jenin to the seam zone are moving through the corridor. One of the laborers, returning to Khalajun, his village, told us his wife was born in Barta’a but came to live in his village. Now she’s not permitted to spend the night in her family’s home in Barta’a to take care of her sick father. All requests to the DCO were unsuccessful; they claim that “the law forbids it.”
16:20 We walked through the corridor to the terminal. 12 people at the terminal entrance; they enter immediately and exit quickly. At 16:30 many laborers arrive and it begins to get crowded next to the revolving gate. Many people are let in, but stop when people arrive from Jenin on their way to the seam zone. Three detainees are already seated inside the terminal.
Laborers returning from work in Israel report that at 4 AM it’s very crowded at the Irtach checkpoint, through which they leave for their jobs in Israel. One said he was there for two hours, from five to seven. I asked whether the delay cost him work hours; his reply: “These checkpoints cost us our lives.” They say there’s one line for older people and two for younger ones, and recently the latter (not only special cases) have been detained for very long periods of time in the crowded rooms where an additional inspection is conducted. Some are held for such a long time they lose a day of work “because their employer didn’t wait,” or they have to look for another job. They say the problems are worse on Fridays.
16:45 A second window opens and people go through faster in both directions.
16:50 The detainees were taken to be checked and released to go through.
17:00 People returning from Jenin wait in the upper parking lot for their vehicle, which has been standing in the closed area for about 30 minutes.