Ma'ale Efrayim, Tayasir, Sun 15.5.11, Afternoon

Observers: 
Daphna B. (reporting), Hava L. (guest)
May-15-2011
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Afternoon

Summary – the Day of the Nakba

Contrary to expectations, and by contrast with other stormy places, the Jordan Valley was calm; we may even say desolate today. There were practically no people and no vehicles in the CPs and on the roads. One of the people going through the CP said that people are afraid that because of the events in other places, the soldiers will take it out on them in the CPs, so they preferred to stay inside at home.

Three Palestinians who were arrested on May 1, 2011, for 'stealing' cartridges that were thrown out, were released on May 8, without any formal accusation, and without bail or a fine – just like that. They were not even told what they were suspected of. Very simple – they were arrested and then they were released. Who will return the wages of eight work days to them, eight days of their lives, eight days away from their families?

12.10 – Ma'aleh Ephraim

The CP is not manned but the presence of soldiers behind the pillbox is quite evident. At 17.00 the CP will be manned by three soldiers.

12.30 – North of Ro'I

Dozens of workers drag their feet to the place where vehicles pick them up to return home. The walking distance – about 500 meters. They worked in the vineyards of the settlement B'kaot, north of Ro'i. When we halted to talk to them, they looked frightened by our questions; fearing perhaps that we are from the authorities and they will get in trouble – so we left them alone.

The high dirt wall that is being built east of the Alon Road is getting longer and longer; it now blocks every possibility of driving from the Valley to the West Bank.

15.00 - Guchiya CP

The military jeep arrives exactly on time. There are no Palestinians.

15.15 – Tyasir CP

Completely desolate. In the 45 minutes that we stayed there four cars went through – in both directions. The passage is quick, the people who get out of the vehicles going east to the Valley are called, 'Come on, three of you!' And when they come near, they are required to approach one by one. The cars going west from the Valley to the West Bank are required to show the documents of all the passengers, but the passengers do not have to get out of the cars and they are not inspected.

16.15 Hamra CP

When we got there, three taxis from the east and another two from the west were waiting. None of them were being inspected. The soldiers were busy and the Palestinians waited quietly. Only after ten minutes did the soldiers find the time to let them through. Palestinian time is apparently fluid time. The cars going in the direction of the West Bank are not inspected and they go through on a side path north of the CP. The passengers going from the West Bank to the Valley have to go through on foot, they wait to be called, in the sun, and after that they wait with their belts in their hands (after they were ordered to take them off in the CP) on the other side of the CP.

Since the traffic is so thin, almost nonexistent, there are no further delays.

16.40 – we left.