Abu Dis, Container (Wadi Nar), Ras Abu Sbitan (Olive Terminal), Sheikh Saed, Mon 1.9.08, Afternoon
2:00 till 5:30 PM
Sheikh Saed, Olive Crossing and Wadi Nar
Only very few people passed through the CP at this hour (3:00 PM). We were not allowed in, since we had not signed the form relieving the army of responsibility for us. We asked the soldier whether he could give us such a form, but he said that we could only obtain those at the DCL. We proceeded via the Road of the Americas and Ras El Amud to Abu Dis and from there to the Western entrance of the Olive Crossing.
In order to reach the DCL we first had to cross over to the Eastern side, which went smoothly, we only showed our Id’s. Then when we stated we wanted to enter the DCL on our way back we were stopped by a girl soldier who told us that we needed to be accompanied for security reasons. Indeed a civil guard came followed by a representative of the DCL accompanied by an elderly (blue) policeman. They had never heard of the above document and thought we had made up a story.
We were then told to wait outside, since no one was allowed to enter the premises as long as we were there (for security reasons). We exited to the East (where we didn’t constitute a security risk and after a while the three musketeers returned and the DCL-soldier informed us that the requested forms can be obtained at the office of the Central Command. We then returned through turnstiles, metal detectors, conveyor belts for to X-ray our bags and the scrutiny of our Id’s back into West Jerusalem (“Have a pleasant stay”).
The entrance ot Maaleh Adumim was very busy and all traffic from the direction of El Azariya had to wait at the roundabout.
There are some changes at the Container CP. Not much has been constructed but certainly almost everything has been demolished. It was hot and dusty and there were long lines from both directions. The soldier under the pathetic parasol had the sun straight in his eyes. On both sides two transits had been held up. One was finally released after almost an hour and a half. Some more were held up, but released within twenty minutes. In another transit only one young man had been told to hand in his Id, thus causing the driver and five other passengers on their way to Ramalla to wait for more than an hour. There was apparently something wrong with the Id and finally they drove off to end the fast, leaving the young man in his black suit alone at the CP.
On the way back we continued towards the newly constructed Border Police Headquarters and saw that along the road (and the wall) on the right the width of a whole lane of the road was covered with coiled barbed wire all the way until the next exit from the A-Zaim crossing. The ‘humanitarian’ gate above the sunken fabric of life road was open and we could see soldiers in a tent and some construction going on