Sansana, South Hebron Hills, Tarqumiya, Mon 4.2.08, Morning
Hagit called to tell us there were reports of the death of a Palestinian worker the previous day on the Palestinian side of the Turqukmia crossing. She asked us to go there to try to verify the report. Sansana (Meitar) CP
6:30 am - No workers waiting on PA. A few on Israeli side waiting for rides to work.
There seemed to be more taxis and cars with PA licenses than usual on the route 60.
Dura and El Fawwar (7:00am) - Open. Sheep Junction - Open to pedestrians; workers and students crossing the road. There was still snow on the ground in the Hebron area.Edna junction - Open. Shuyukh junction - We talked to a group of 6 men of the Hebron side including a young man who said that the soldiers there hit him both yesterday and today because he did not respond quickly enough to their commands. The men reported that they were kept waiting between one to 3 hours to have their identity cards checked. We wanted to talk to the soldiers sitting in a jeep at the junction but they seemed to be asleep.
Sheep junction (later) - One of the soldiers reported that he didn’t hear about what happened at the Shuyukh junction. Another was talking to his insurance agent and the one in the jeep also seemed to be talking on his mobile phone.
Hundreds of workers were waiting to cross into Israel and there were women waiting on the opposite side of the road to board buses to visit relatives in prison. The Palestinians reported that the previous day there had been many workers waiting to cross with much pushing and shoving to get to the front of the line. The border had been closed for a several days because of the bad weather and the weekend. They heard that someone died as a result of the crowding, pushing and shoving. The soldiers we talked to said no one had died but than someone had been hurt and that a Red Crescent ambulance had taken him to an area hospital. The Palestinian who sells coffee at the crossing told us that the Palestinian workers caused whatever problems there were and not the soldiers. All the workers were very anxious to work after several days of not being able to get to work. There were an unusually large number of soldiers at the crossing. Army policemen were manning the crossing. We counted 14 and there were more outside of our line of vision. The officer we spoke to told us that there was to be an inspection of the crossing later that day. By the time we left 10 minutes later, all the workers had proceeded to the security check point. A half a dozen women then proceeded to cross to the security check point but only after all the men had gone through.