'Anabta, 'Azzun 'Atma, Ar-Ras, Thu 29.5.08, Afternoon
The road which is in any case in a bad condition has been
covered by the army with stones which force the cars to zigzag past and
only go through one at a time. At the side of the road is a car which
has been delayed for 10 minutes by the soldiers who are checking it.
The barrier which blocked the passage to the village of Safrin on road 557 has been taken down.
At the side of the checkpoint is a taxi with the passengers
standing next to it. The soldiers check the IDs and their belongings
are checked on the road or on their knees. The soldiers motion to cars
to pass in both directions with no checking. Now and again they choose
one to be checked.
jeep arrives and blocks the entrance to Tulkarm. The soldiers change
shifts and for 15 minutes there is no passage and soon there is a line
of 35 cars in the direction of Tulkarm and 20 from the opposite
direction. At 15.21 we left.
Checkpoint of Jalud.
5 soldiers checking the passengers of a car and
scold the driver of one of the cars as he does not have his papers with
him. "And what if the Palestinian police catch you?" After a delay they
are allowed to pass. The soldiers feel that they are the highest
authority in the area even over matters that have nothing to do with
13 people are delayed in the shed and they call us as we
arrive. They tell us that before we arrived one of the soldiers (they
showed us which one, his name is Ben) caught one of their people and
took him behind the cement barriers and beat him. The man wants to
lodge a complaint and says that he is not scared to do so. The detained
people have been detained from 5 minutes to three hours. Then we heard
shouts and see the soldiers leaning over the driver of a Palestinian
car. When we come closer they deny that they hit people or shouted.
They say that all the people have only been delayed for a short time
until they should be checked. After some minutes 10 of the people are
freed and two left and also the man who was beaten.
pass to the other side of the checkpoint and other people turn to us
and point Ben out. They say that he beats and threatens people and that
he will not stop doing so until he kills someone. The soldier
understands that we are looking at him and aftera few minutes the
commander sends him to the sentry tower and tells the soldier stationed
there to relieve him.
soldiers are very vulgar in their behaviour and show their bitterness
with hard words. The company commander arrives and brings detainees who
had been caught returning from Israel in his jeep. He explains to us
that in his company no one beats anyone but they are allowed to shout
at them. The police arrive in connection with a car which the soldiers
think has been stolen. The soldiers say make up a story that we have
helped a Palestinian to get through the checkpoint illegally (which is
impossible) and complain to the police. The checking of cars and people
is extremely slow. Everyone in the line curses. All the people with
whom we spoke said that when other soldiers are there the situation is
much better and it is this group who are really bad. We left at 19.43.