We arrived at 09:25. The line stretched back to the benches. We saw photographs of shahids which the soldiers hadn’t yet noticed pasted on the signs detailing the opening hours of the Community Administration. A British EAPPI volunteer told us that from time to time a large group of people is admitted quickly, and then the lines inside grow congested. That occurred a few minutes later; all those waiting at the checkpoint were admitted, but the lines inside were crowded. That’s how it was during our entire time at the checkpoint.
The British volunteer told us his organization’s activities are similar to those of Machsom Watch. They observe what’s going on, time how long the crossing takes, try to help as much as they can, sometimes with the DCO’s assistance. They live in A-Ram while they’re here.
We phoned the DCO asking why the humanitarian gate is closed. The duty soldier replied: “The checkpoint was open his morning. They should come on time.” Half an hour after our call the humanitarian gate opened and a large group of people who’d moved over to it a few minutes earlier went in.