Jalama

Place: 
Observers: 
Neta G. , Reporting Marcia L. , Translation
Apr-6-2016
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Afternoon

I travel to the checkpoint with four people, residents of Nablus and stay to observe a bit at Jalame Checkpoint (Gilboa). 

 

15:40 - People are already returning from work at this hour. Some are construction workers who work in Afula; most are men, also a few women, agricultural workers who work in the  moshavim and in the Beit Shean valley. 

 

People arrive in private cars, minibuses, and buses. Many carry sacks and baskets filled with agricultural products.  One smiling woman wants to share the fruits of her labor with me but I politely refuse.  Another woman carries two big sacks with difficulty. I approach her to help her but a young man precedes me and takes one of the sacks.  They are not used to our presence at this checkpoint. People bless me with peace  and also admire the writing on my tag, " No to Checkpoints. ". One man thinks that I need transportation and asks the driver to take me. I thank him and say that I have a car. 

 

16:00 - A stream of returning workers grows at this hour.  The passage is through the terminal and not on the side if it. A line is created outside the terminal, but within minutes, they are swallowed up in the building.  I didn't want to confront the administrators of the checkpoint, who didn't allow me to stand next to the entrance to the terminal.  Even less, I wanted to pre-arrange the "visit" as the Director demanded.   I observed a bit from a distance, from the sleeveinfo-icon and from the awning of the waiting area.    The awning was arranged in an orderly way around walls of clear plastic and there were tables and places to sit, fans and lighting (see photo).  Only one person entered the covered area and prayed to the voice of the muezzin who was heard from the mukibla next to it. 

 

16:30 - I leave. People continue to arrive at the checkpoint from work   At the checkpoint a vehicle passes a car of Israeli Arabs, citizens of Israel. It appears that the passage is very quick and there isn't a long line.