'Awarta, Beit Furik, Burin (Yitzhar), Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Tue 17.2.09, Afternoon

Observers: 
Maki S., Amira I. (reporting)
Feb-17-2009
|
Afternoon

Translator:  Charles K.

A sign at the Beit Furik checkpoint:  "Thank you, Machsom Watch, for contributing to the success of our struggle," and in small letters, underneath, Terror organizations.

13:15  Za'tara.  No lines.  Traffic flows freely.

Entrance to Burin - An army jeep protects Electric Company workers and their heavy equipment. 

13:25  Two armored jeeps at the entrance to Yitzhar.

13:30  Beit Furik

A police car in the middle of the checkpoint stops all cars, in particular taxis leaving Nablus, but also a Red Crescent ambulance.  A line of six cars forms.

G., the checkpoint commander, hurries over to chase us away and silence a soldier so he doesn't talk to us. 
I call him over to the "permissible location" to ask why the police are stopping cars.  He says that it's a weekly inspection, lasting 20 minutes, looking for stolen cars and checking licenses.  And then we see a sign printed on pink oaktag, pasted to the checkpoint:

"Thank you, Machsom Watch, for contributing to the success of our struggle," and in small letters, underneath, Terror organizations.

We asked where the sign came from; they said it had been hung today.  He wasn't willing to remove it. 
Maki called the DCO representative who came immediately and took it down.

The policeman has finished his job and starts following us, stops us (we're driving), asks where we're headed.  We tell him we're going to the Huwwara checkpoint.  He warns us not to get into a confrontation there with the soldiers, because he'll be around, and if they complain he'll hold us at the Ariel police station for five hours...

14:00  Awarta

No delays, no line.

Excavations and high earth walls opposite the checkpoint.  Three prefabricated structures have already been placed on site.  S., the DCO representative from the Huwwara checkpoint, tells us that a firing range is being prepared.

  • - Who does the land belong to?

14:10  Huwwara checkpoint

Three lanes open, and also the humanitarian lane.  Things move quickly, the men don't have to remove belts, but then later on they do.  The x-ray vehicle is operating; two inspection lanes for cars leaving Nablus.  Passengers' documents are also checked.  We counted about 15 cars waiting on line; one of the drivers said he'd waited 20 minutes...

15:55  Za'tara

15 cars waiting on line.