Tura – Shaked 07.25 - 08.05
It was a clear day with cold winds. When we arrived, a long queue was waiting in front of the turnstile on the Jordan Valley side – dozens of people. What had happened? Apparently the key to the computer room had been forgotten. . . . At first, people passed through one by one, extremely slowly. One of them summed it up: “this is a shitty day”. The queue lengthened and also became rather noisy. Then small groups started to pass a bit faster, while the registration was apparently done by hand. Now things began to move and when we left everyone had passed through, including two cyclists. The cars passed through fast in both directions. Nevertheless, all those passing through were very polite to us, greeted us and some even asked for help.
08.15 – 08.45 Barta’a-Reichan
Here the passage was fast, two windows were open, we didn’t observe a big queue and also those passing-through told us “everything is OK”.
A man from Ya’bed approached us for help: during the last Yom Kippur, his family’s olive orchard near Shaked was burned down - more than 500 old trees. He didn’t attribute this to arson but to a fire on a hot day. (The fire dept. is still investigating this). In order to clear and rehabilitate the burned area, and to and to plant new trees, the family needs a permit to pass through the checkpoint with a car, a tractor and the necessary equipment. “We have submitted all the necessary documents to the civil administration, to this place and that, but we haven’t received any answer”. The orchard is near the Tura checkpoint, but they can only get a permit for passage (for pedestrians only) through the Barta’a checkpoint. We took down the details and would try to help.
In the car-park we met Mary, her brother, and her father, Amjad, who were waiting for transport to Um-Al-Fachem for physiotherapy.