'Anin, Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Mon 8.4.13, Morning

Observers: 
Leah R., Anna N.S.
Apr-8-2013
|
Morning

Translator:  Charles K.

 

06:10  A’anin agricultural checkpoint

The checkpoint is open; inspections are conducted in the center of the checkpoint (far from us).  We’re told that about 50 people are waiting.  A new detachment of soldiers works very slowly until 06:45 and then speeds up.  People complain that the soldiers are being picky about clothing – those who, in their opinion, are dressed too well, too neatly, “inappropriately” for farm work – aren’t allowed through.  Each time there’s a renewed argument with someone else about the fact that the occupying power permits them to reach their lands, which are trapped behind the separation fence, only twice a week; we hear their voices.  One says:  “I want to walk (through my olive grove) – I’m forbidden?”  And adds, provocatively:  “Are you too forbidden from just wandering around?”

 

The red-headed tractor driver wants to see his son, who lives in Umm Reihan, to bring clothes and food to his grandchildren,  but he isn’t allowed to take them through.  Only after arguing for a few minutes, during which the checkpoint stops operating, the soldiers change their minds and allow him through with the “equipment.” 

 

06:50  We left; 20 people still wait to cross.

 

07:00  Tura-Shaked checkpoint

We arrive at the checkpoint together with the soldiers.  The teachers and pupils from the Tura elementary school are already waiting to cross.  The fenced corridor is closed and locked; ten minutes later a soldier comes to open it.  More than 20 people wait at the revolving gate on the West Bank side.  The wait is relatively long.

 

07:30  Barta’a-Reihan checkpoint

A long line of private cars and taxis waits to cross to the West Bank.  The procedure requires that while documents are being inspected the passengers get out and wait at the booth on the road. 

Two trucks loaded with merchandise wait on the road too.

 

The checkpoint parking lot is full of parked cars.  On the other hand, there are few taxis (private taxis, not authorized ones).  Drivers of those taxis earn most of their money in the afternoon and evening when residents of the West Bank return home.  Towards 08:00 the flow of people arriving at the checkpoint increases; they’re all on their way to work in the seam zone, primarily in eastern Barta’a.  People cross quickly, without delays both here and in the upper fenced corridor.