'Anata, Abu Dis, Container (Wadi Nar), Thu 27.3.08, Afternoon

Observers: 
Daphna S., Ronit B. (reporting) Hana B.
Mar-27-2008
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Afternoon

Wadi Naar 15:10

There are no BP men at the checkpoint where the cars come from the direction of Beit Lehem. The cars are not being checked, the traffic flows. About 15 cars drive one after the other, until we can cross the road.


 
On the other direction, coming from Abu Dis, the BP men wave most of the drivers to drive on. They stop a lorry carrying sheep, they go through the documents the driver has, and let him go through. Every once in a while one of the taxis is being checked. We check, and it takes about five minutes until the passengers get their documents back.

 
There are BP men in both checking posts. They talk to each other, forget to wave the cars, and those stop in front of the checkpoint. Within minutes a line is piling up, and when the BP men see it, half a minutes later, they get back to waving cars through.

 
One of the drivers notices us and shouts :"come every day" others wave us hallo.

 
When we were here on former shifts, we saw the BP men demand the drivers coming from Beit Lehem direction and being stopped for checkup to park their cars vertical and not parallel to the road. Today the detained drivers are used to it and park vertically without being told to do so.

 
A minibus coming from the direction of Abu Dis is being checked, and a line forms behind it. A few minutes later the BP man directs the drivers to pass the minivan and come forwards. The line that was formed and reached the top of the hill disappeared within a short time.

 
Every driver that reaches the checkpoint and does not see the BP man waving stops and waits patiently, sometimes a few minutes if needed. None honks or goes forwards without an order. Those people have some bitter experience...

 
15:45 The first workers come on foot. The traffic flows, on both directions, and the pedestrian traffic as well. A woman with a big heavy bag on her head tries to shorten her way. The BP man points to the carousel (the longest way), where about 30 workers are already crowding. The workers are holding the IDs in a way that the BP man can see it and he waves them to keep going. No one is being checked. The workers let the woman go in the carousel ahead of them, and her ID is being checked by the BP man. Those coming after her he waves again to go through. Within two minutes the checkpoint is empty again.

 
An ambulance arrives from the direction of Beit Lehem, and it is being checked by the BP men who have until now checked the cars coming from Abu Dis direction. This way that side of the checkpoint is left without them. Immediately there forms a long line/ When they finished to check the ambulance they open for it the yellow gate, by which we park, and it is going to one of the houses left to the checkpoint.

 
We left the place at about 16:00 when the checkpoint is empty and the two BP men sit on the concrete devider between the lanes, and wave the cars to keep going.

 
Anata

16:20 A line of cars on the way from Anata to Jerusalem. The cars entering the neighborhood are not being checked. There are 4 BP men, two Military Police women, and three private security guards. Almost every car is being checked, in most of them the luggage compartment as well. The waiting drivers are fed up and they start a honking concert that goes on for two full minutes (what a difference between those drivers and those in the checkpoint of Wadi Naar. Vive la petite difference between a green and a blue ID).


 
Suddenly they stop checking every car, and start chekcing every fifth to eighth car. In those being checked they open the back door and the luggage compartement. We measured 8 minutes in order to go thorugh the checkpoint.

 
A few children go through the carousel. The soldier checks only the document of the eldest (abaout 16 years old).

 
A car stops beyond the checkpoint. The soldiers are checking the back seat, one of the passengers, a young woman, comes out and speaks with the driver and the sodliers. A few minutes later they both enter the car and the driver makes a turn and they return to Anata.

 
Not one minute goes by, and another car stops there, The green ID of the driver is taken by the BP officer who waves it a few times in kind of a threatening way towards the driver. The driver empties the luggage compartement, and when he finishes putting everythin back in the car they let him drive back towards Jerusalem.

 
We left at 16:45 when the line in the place is as long as it was when we arrived, only the cars are different.