Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Jubara (Kafriat), Sun 17.3.13, Morning
The gates open at 04:05, five minutes late.
The women’s gate opens at the same time. All the women who had crowded around go through in 4 minutes and the gate is locked. Whoever arrives a minute later (at 04:10) must join the regular line. Women claim that Friday (15.3.13) the women’s gate didn’t open at all!
Among those crossing to Israel, a man we’d chosen to time at 04:15 came out of the facility at 04:25. In other words – the crossing goes quickly. A man who’d been given a slip of paper by the Ecumenicals when he was still in line came through in 15 minutes. All six booths are operating. A man tells us about an elderly man who was delayed inside; a second person tells us that the elderly man was sent back. It isn’t clear why.
The flow of people coming through diminishes. The Ecumenicals report by phone that the entry gates have been closed. They remained closed for 15 minutes. Why? The congestion at the entrance increases; people become angrier! The Ecumenicals report that there’s confusion and fighting at the gate. Two weeks ago, 1118 people entered the facility during the first half hour; today, only 750 went in.
People tell us it’s difficult to obtain prescription drugs as part of their health insurance (drugs are available privately but they’re too expensive for the laborers). We tried to find out what health insurance they had. It isn’t clear to us. Everyone with an Israeli work permit pays NIS 95 per month for insurance. The people we spoke to didn’t know whether they were covered by Nat==nal Insurance (Bituach Leumi) or by the health insurance law. Annalin tried for a week to find out what insurance they had, and what it entitled them to (that’s why this report has been delayed). We haven’t yet been able to understand what’s going on. If anyone knows – please tell us.
05:15 Jubara crossing. We were asked to find out about the relocation of the fence’s route. The new route hasn’t yet been completed; we see double fences – both new ones and old ones in a confusing tangle. At this hour all the gates in the fence are open. Cars go through the vehicle crossing without stopping.
05:35 We left.