Tarqumiya

Observers: 
Tzipi Yagupsky, Yael Agmon (reporting); Charles K. (trans)
08/06/2014
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Morning

We left Omer at 14:00.

We reached the Tarqumiya crossing at 14:49.  There were already workers in the covered area (cf. photos). 

We were told in answer to our question that people begin arrive at 00:00 – 01:00 to get a place on line.

Five peddlers display their wares outside.  People continue to arrive. 

03:06  The cage is full; the line extends beyond it.

03:13  The line grows longer; the shouting becomes louder.

03:19  The first minibus arrives, filled with workers.

Vehicles arrive at a faster rate as the hour approaches to open the revolving gatesinfo-icon.

03:37  People begin moving restlessly, tension, yelling.

03:45  The gates open for half a minute.

03:48  The gates open again, people who pass recognize us from previous shifts.  Only two lanes are open at this hour.  The older men tell us additional permits have been granted for work in the almond and olive groves and many younger men push ahead; the older ones move aside.

The line extended to the road by the time the revolving gates opened.

03:56  The revolving gate stops for half a minute.  The line already winds along the road.

03:59  The gate stops.

04:00  The gate opens for three entire minutes.

04:05  It opens until 04:06.

04:07  It opens until 04:08. 

04:10  Opens until 04:11 – apparently for half a minute

04:11  Opens until 04:12

04:13  Opens until 04:14

04:15  Opens until 04:17; I was able to count 100 people; I estimate about 150 went through.

04:18  Opens until 04:20

04:21  Opens until 04:22.  At this point the first person comes back; his permit had expired.

04:23  The gates open, two more workers come back – one forgot his magnetic card; the other’s thumbprint didn’t match.

04:25  Again opens.  The line still extends to the road.

04:48  Another comes back because he lacks a permit; suddenly there’s congestion and two people jump in over the roof.

At 05:00 the lines shortens significantly; many workers are still arriving.

We move back.

From 03:45 to 05:00 the international observers counted 3,508 people crossing.

It wouldn’t hurt to open the revolving gate at 03:00 and ensure there’s no line.  The Palestinians are also entitled to sleep at night.