Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Ya'bed-Dotan, Sun 29.9.13, Afternoon
14:10 – Reihan Barta'a Checkpoint
We dropped off Ali and his mother at Reihan Barta'a beyond the checkpoint. The parking lot was crowded so we didn't drive in. We saw workers descending the sleeve on their way back from work. There were seven trucks parked on the road waiting to be checked. Ali's father, who had come to collect his family, told us that the situation at the Dotan checkpoint was difficult today.
14:30 – Yaabed Dotan Checkpoint
Indeed, the checkpoint was crowded on both sides. ON the Jenin side, soldiers were checking ID cards of drivers and of their passengers. While we were there, two taxis and one car with their passengers were not permitted to cross. We asked the soldiers for an explanation but were given none. During the time we were there a long slow-moving line formed. There were many jeeps that went back and forth across the checkpoint. We were told this was due to a stone throwing incident and that an explosive charge had also been found, but were not given any further details. We also heard that this checkpoint was manned since 07:00 this morning and that a second checkpoint has been set up at the main entrance to Yaabed. We asked people coming from Reihan if the terminal was still crowded at the place where people's magnetic cards were checked and were told that people had to wait there for 4-5 hours.
15:40 – Tura Shaked Checkpoint
A cool breeze is blowing and the soldiers are busy talking on the stairs. There is very little traffic. We met a farmer coming back from his olive groves with a bucket of beautiful olives. Two students from Jenin politely declined our offer of a ride and explained that someone was coming to pick them up.