Ras Abu Sbitan (Olive Terminal), Sheikh Saed

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Rahel M., Michaela R. (reporting)

5:30 Sheikh Saed

For the first time we're observing from the inside (instead of the outside), where people are checked in the small room inside the checkpoint.  As in the every checkpoint, there are a whole lot of turnstiles, also in the exit lane from Jerusalem -- at least four.  What we did not see is a lane for the handicapped and for babyinfo-icon buggies:  leading from the first turnstile at which one enters the checkpoint space, there is a narrow and steep staircase.

People entered one by one into the checking room, and at this hour the lines were long, sometimes all the way up the stairs.  Above the door there is a red and green light, supposed to indicate when the room is free.  But the lights were not working, and people held the door slightly open in order to know when to move in, until someone was inspired to wedge the door open with a stone.  This is supposed to be a new checkpoint, but it's already showing signs of age, even before its new installations have begun to function properly.


6:00 Olive Terminal

At this hour 3 checking positions are working, but in the first we saw the soldier playing with his cell phone. Two guards standing near the exit from the checkpoint were likewise employed.  Many workmen are still crossing, the lines grow or diminish according to the rate of arrivals.  Waiting time is not too long, but as always, unnecessary.
At 6:30 the middle checking position closes.  No announcement, and of course no notice on the turnstile.