'Anin, Reihan, Shaked, Sun 23.3.08, Afternoon

Observers: 
Riki, Ruti T. (reporting)
Mar-23-2008
|
Afternoon
14:25 Aanin Checkpoint

We were very early. The gatesinfo-icon will only open at 15:00.
Fifteen people wait in the shade of some olive trees. We park behind a short line of tractors, pondering for a moment whether to make a quick visit to Shaked, but the waiting people are already approaching to present their harsh complaints.
Mahmoud from Aanin cultivates an olive grove south of the gate. He leads us down the slope to the young trees, which a herd of cows, belonging to an Israeli Arab from Ein Sahle, had chewed upon, and now he has no option but to uproot them and replant. The owner of the herd threatens that if he complains, the whole grove will be burnt. If the gate were open every day, Mahmoud contends, the family would get rally to protect the grove against the herds. This request is repeated frequently: Open the gate for us every day. We cannot work this way. Mahmoud also has a grove beyond the checkpoint, on the hill to the north, ostensibly requiring no permit to pass, but the Border Police drive him away and his small children are afraid to go there with him. He has 17 children and the living conditiond are too hard to bear.
The checkpoint gate opens at 15:00. The soldiers call the tractors first, but the people insist that passage should be according to the line that they had formed, and this is what happens. The passage is very fast and within half an hour we are left alone with the soldiers, who show us their lists: some 20 people - listed in the morning – have not returned.
15:30 – the gate is locked.

15:45 Shaked-Tura Checkpoint

The gates are devoid of people. The soldiers tell us a little about their shifts. At 15:50 a youth in a donkey cart arrives from the direction of the isolated house . He gets off and rushes over to greet us. Within three minutes he is through.

16:05 Reihan-Bartaa Checkpoint

The lower parking lot is full of vehicles. Many taxi drivers wait for passengers. One private car presently waiting to cross into the Seam Zone. Four vans are in the inspection compound.
16:30 – many harvest workers arrive in the upper sleeveinfo-icon from workplaces in Israel, sacks of oranges on their backs. They come through to the lower parking lot within seven minutes, climb into cars, taxis or vans – and drive away. A taxi driver coming from Yabed announces, "there are many problems."
17:00 - one private car in the inspection compound. Three cars wait to cross into the Seam Zone. One of the drivers hoots and shouts that he has been waiting for half an hour. The lower parking lot empties out.
17:15 – we leave.