Tarqumiya, Wed 16.4.08, Morning
We arrived at the CP at 5:15. On the Palestinian side transporters are arriving, the workers are running inside and are out of sight in the sleeves. It took them 20 minutes to cross to the other side.
On the Israeli side we see hundreds of workers sitting and waiting for their rides.
We managed to get to the exit of the workers from the sleeve and saw that in some of the sleeves there's a queue whereas in others the passage is very fast.
The security man approached us and asked us to leave. The deputy of the manager came and explained that security wise he cannot allow us to stay there.
The workers said the passage is quick but that there's a problem – they wait a long time for their rides and on the Israeli side there's no food.
We went to the place where they check the cars and were nicely welcomed. They explained that the inspection takes time but they already added personnel and that today it is already better organized. The inspection is very thorough and includes dogs (took more than an hour).
The drivers are very frustrated and think that it is done on purpose in order to make them cross through Israel and not through the territories so that the cars that bring the workers and the cars that pick them up will be separated (that will save the inspection of course).
By and large, we got the impression that there's good will on the part of the CP operators.
We were told that the return of the workers in the afternoon goes fast and without problems.
We left at 6AM.