Eliyahu Crossing, Habla, Mon 24.1.11, Morning
The gate opened late and inspection is slow.
07:15 The second five come through only now. Because of the late opening and the pressure felt by the Palestinians to get to work on time there are arguments about whose turn it is. While there’s a Palestinian who comes early and makes a list of who’s on line, but after he goes through the order isn’t adhered to.
The bus with pupils arrives, the driver’s ID is checked and the bus continues. The second bus crossed today through Qalqilya.
7:27 We leave while dozens of laborers are still crowded beyond the gate.
07:30 Eliyau crossing (109)
No one waiting, a few walking along the path to the gate.
07:45 Jayyus agricultural gate
Few crossing. The soldiers tell us that when the checkpoint opens in the morning about 40 people cross to their groves and fields. A Palestinian is plowing the ground between the olive trees near the gate with a donkey, sowing durra(?).
The gate closes at 8:00.
08:15 Falamya gate.
Few crossing. Bored reservists, willing to talk and even to listen.
08:30 We return via the village of Jayyus and on the way run into Na’im, the friend of Anat S. and Dalya G.. He invites us home for tea/coffee. We meet his wife and two of his children. We talk about livelihoods, the children’s schooling and the situation in general…
09:30 Nebi Elias
We made another appointment with Jalal, the head of the village, so he’d show and explain the problems with the lands and how hard it is to get to them on the Alfei Menashe side, as well as the problem of Area C, which is strangling the village. We also drove with him to see the fence that the court ordered moved closer to the settlement of Zufim. We saw the broad strip of bare earth left by the former fence (about 100 olive trees were uprooted), and broad strip of the new fence which, of course, again stole their land. Jallal told us about a landowner who’d twice had olive trees uprooted. We saw his attempt to plant beans on the edge of the bare strip. Jallal said they were promised that the land would be restored to its former state, but of course that didn’t happen. Landowners whose property remained between the new fence and Zufim can only reach it with a special permit, via Zufim.
On the way back we tried to enter the settlement of Zufim, to see from there the fence and the lands. But because we flew the Machsomwatch flags, they didn’t let us in…Nor did they let us turn left to the Eyal crossing.
Leaving the checkpoint we even got a ticket from a “friendly” policeman who claimed we were blocking traffic, which was totally false.