Abu-Dis

Nov-9-2003
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Date: 9.11.03 – Morning

Observers: Ch. A., J. S., A. G. and I. D. + guest from the
States

Sawahre - Driving via Maaleh Adumim there was a long queue of cars
from M. Adumim towards the tunnel waiting before the tunnel
checkpoint. Only two cars were waiting at the Checkpoint at the
exit of El Azariya, all others had passed. It was obviously open.
We drove via Qedar and parked next to the grocery store across from
the soldiers who had moved the little square tent close to the
watchtower. Two girl-soldiers were huddling idly near the
tower

apparently freezing. There were about fifty people held up, many
claimed since 6:30. Among them a couple of students who had an exam
at 8:00 (it was 8:45).

The soldiers said they had only been waiting for about twenty
minutes, but then started releasing the first batch of about twenty
workers. The next fifteen (all students) were sent on their way
towards Abu Dis ten minutes later. All thanked us profusely. One
was sent back to Hebron with a note to contact the Security
Services office for further investigation.

Then it started pouring and when we ran for shelter to our car the
soldiers opened the small square tent for the 11 still remaining
workers. Rafi Amsalem was contacted and informed us that soon a
reserve-officer, Danny, was due to arrive at the Checkpoint and
would clear all 'our problems' with us.

We didn't have to wait for him, since as soon as the rains stopped
the last workers were released and sent on their way towards Abu
Dis.

On the Eastern side of the Abu Dis wall we saw that people were
crossing freely and noted no BP-presence. The Checkpoint near M.
Adumim was not manned, but many cars were parked along the road
awaiting their owners after their return from work.