'Azzun, Eyal Crossing, Habla, Qalqiliya

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Edna Sela, Annelien Kisch (reporting +photo’s)

The permanency of the Occupation: the non-stop development and landscaping of the Eyal Terminal.


4.48     No workers exited yet. The parking lot full with the usual white transits and on the side one bus of “Kavim” public transport company.   On Fridays Eyal Terminal apparently only opens at 5.00 AM, not like Irtach at 4.45 AM.

5.00     We hear a voice via a loudspeaker: “work starting” and within 5 min the first worker exits. These are only men going to work though, as those people with a permit for going to Jerusalem’s Al Aksa for praying on the last Friday of Ramadan will be able to pass only at 8.00 AM.  All men and women seem in good spirits and greet us friendly . We meet Naim a Palestinian who is not just familiar with Machsom Watch but cooperates with us: he spoke at one of our meetings in the Cinemateque in Tel Aviv. He hurries off to his job but not before asking us if we need his help for anything and tells us passing the Terminal goes smoothly.

5.30      As we are not being allowed near the Terminal to observe near the fence of Kalkiliya where the workers enter the passsage, we pass the Terminal and walk towards the DCO-office behind it, to see if the road behind this office still gives access to the security road surrounding Kalkiliya from where we can observe the Kalkiliya’s fence with the workers-passage leading towards the Terminal; indeed it does.

We see that still not enough has been done to make the Occupation even more permanent:  the non-stop development and landscaping continues here at Eyal. The very moment we took a picture of these developments we hear a warning voice, and from   nowhere” comes a security-guard and some meters behind him the manager of the Terminal, with yet another guard, calling us and tells us ” like at Ben-Gurion Airport also here it is forbidden to take pictures, as is written at the entrance” .  No sign to be seen, though, unless you walk where we are not permitted to go (the yellow board on the opened gate).
Enough watertaps are profided for,  here at Eyal, but because of Ramadan  few make use  of it today.

5.45      We leave and drive eastwards direction Tsofim. On the road just before the Kalkiliya- crossing near Tsofim there are billboards, one with forbidding to “dump waste in Yehuda and Shomron” and one a “prohibition to give cars for repairs in the Palestinian Authority”.

This time we could pass the Kalkiliya crossing without being asked any questions and our stopping and taking pictures was not felt as suspect.

6.00   We drove to Azun to see if there was any IDF presence there but the yellow barrier was open and no soldiers were seen. The village seems still asleep at this early hour.

6.07 The girl-soldier at the Eliyahu-crossing started talking in English to us, maybe because of our MW-flag, thinking it was some international organization. Her Ethiopian colleague thought it hilarious she did not know what Machsom Watch was. With causing so much fun, they gave us no problems letting us pass.

6.10Habla-crossing still closed and deserted. “It opens usually on time, at 6.30, also Fridays, and no special problems either” we were told by a couple of men sitting in front of one of the several nurseries there. We took their word for it and did not wait for the arrival of the soldiers