Beit Iba, Tue 17.2.09, Morning

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Shlomit S., Ruth Cohen (reporting) Translator: Charles K.


On the way to Beit Iba we see
a permanent checkpoint under construction.  At the moment it’s
not manned.  The DCO representative at Beit Iba says that the checkpoint
will make it easier for residents of the villages in the area to move
around freely.

It’s rainy and wet at Beit
Iba.  A continuous flow of people entering on foot.  No inspections
of people entering during our entire stay, so there’s no line. 
The footpath is completely flooded, and everyone using it gets his shoes
and pants legs soaked.  Despite this, some of those going through
are so apprehensive about taking the wrong route that they insist on
walking through the water and getting wet.  While we were there
the DCO representative arrives with two interns, welcoming, asking Are
there any problems?  When we show them the puddles on the path
one of them takes the initiative and blocks it with a sheet of metal,
so it’s clear that people can use the other, dry route.  Later,
when the checkpoint commander sees that people are still going through
in the rain, he blocks the flooded path with a pole.  We should
note that the entire crew at the checkpoint is welcoming and takes the
initiative to make things easier.  A dog wanders around all the
time harassing those going through.  They ask our help.  Our
request is also met, and the wandering dog is removed.

A few people on line leaving
Nablus.  Everyone gets inspected, and traffic flows freely.

The line of vehicles is relatively
short.  The bars that are raised and lowered at the entrance and
at the exit have been removed, and the inspection is conducted relatively