Awarta, Beit Furik, Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Tue 18.3.08, Morning

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Nurit V., Ninette B., and Dina A. (reporting)

Translation:  Suzanne O.

In just an hour's drive from the railway station at Kfar Sava and we are in another world.

A place in which nothing can be taken for granted and where the residents' plans are just that, plans, because they cannot know in advance what, why and for how long they will be held up.

In short: a routine day of occupation.

Nadim's car has broken down and he has sent his brother to be our driver.

Za'atra (Tapuach) Junction

7:45 a.m. 

It is quite crowded in both directions with the inspections taking place like an assembly line.

From the direction of Road 5 there about 11 cars in the queue and from the direction of Nablus there is a jam of some 42 cars in the queue.

On our way here an iron barrier barred the entrance to Zeita.

Although the roadblock has been removed at Borin Junction, on the road a Hammer jeep is parked at the entrance to Huwwara village with a soldier sitting on it with his weapon drawn.

Beit Furiq roadblock

8:05 a.m.

As we near it is very quiet and the soldiers come over to warn us about the white line, however, since the pedestrian traffic moves swiftly through the two checkpoints there was no reason for us to approach therefore they immediately withdrew.

There are 6 cars in the queue and the drivers tell us that there is a half an hour wait, the soldiers carry out checks continuously so, within a short time, all the cars cross.


8:45 a.m. 

There is one lorry and the area is deserted.

Huwwara roadblock

8:50 a.m. 

Only a few people queue to cross, the inspections are routine and since they are quick the people are not angry.

The roadblock commander is welcoming and so is the Military Policewoman who is at the car checkpoint, she also thinks it is a particularly quiet day today.

The main action is the arrival of school buses on their annual outing from Ramallah to Nablus.  There are 12 coaches who all have their crossing permits ready so the drivers show them and the coaches cross, the girls are happy, it's just like an annual outing.

Since it was very quiet, we left at 9:45 a.m.

On the way back the jeep that had been at the entrance to the village Huwwara was no longer there.

At Tapuach Junction there were about 20 cars in the queue from Nablus and in the other direction only 3 in the queue.