Beit Iba, Fri 5.12.08, Morning
Translator: Charles K.
8:00 Beit Iba
When we arrived the checkpoint was quiet and normal. No lines. Random inspections of people entering. Those leaving undergo all the inspections.
After a while we go over to the area of the taxi drivers. We with them and talk.
About 8:45 the checkpoint stops working. We go near the area where the soldiers stop people from coming closer and the soldier explains that a suspicious item was found at the checkpoint, it’s being examined, and it isn’t clear how long the checkpoint will remain closed. They’re waiting from the army bomb disposal person. After a few minutes the place fills with people waiting to go through, as well as military vehicles, and soldiers of various ranks.
The youth suspected of carrying the item is brought over to the side of the checkpoint. He’s handcuffed. Surrounded by soldiers and officers. We draw closer to the place he’s being interrogated. For some reason, no one stops us from standing and listening to the interrogation. The “bomb” looks like a spray can of paint (like a bottle of deodorant), and near it a few wires. We try to talk to the youth. He tells us what village he comes from. He’s a vegetable merchant, on the way to Tulkarm. Not frightened. About half an hour after the start of the incident the checkpoint resumes normal operation.
The bomb disposal person arrives. The robot is removed from its vehicle. The item is placed in a concrete cube and the robot makes its acquaintance. At this stage we left. No explosion was heard.
We asked for the phone number of relatives in order to follow up what happens to the suspect for the rest of the day.
We told Ra’aya the story, and later it was learned that he was released to go home.