'Awarta, 'Azzun 'Atma, Huwwara, יום א' 15.3.09, בוקר
Translation: Suzanne O.
The traffic is heavy, Palestinian workers wait for Israelis, usually settlers, to come and transport them to their work in the settlements. On the other side, Israeli drivers wait for their Palestinian workers. What an absurd situation of mutual dependence, it is impossible to disengage Palestinians from settlers.
There is a Border Police vehicle and an Israeli police vehicle and an additional Border Police vehicle arrives while we are at the roadblock.
An Israeli, who is apparently waiting for his workers, tells us that there was a big jam at the roadblock and the Palestinians tried to get through the fence.
About 25 Palestinians stand crowded together at the eastern side of the fence, 3 soldiers check them on the Israeli side and 3 additional soldiers guard them.
The Palestinians we talked to claim that it took them two hours to cross two roadblocks. We tried to talk to the soldiers, to find out what is going on, but they ignored us.
The civilian police vehicle leaves. The roadblock empties, about 7 - 8 people queue for inspection. We leave.
There are a great number of vehicles on both sides of the barrier.
There are no vehicles at the western roadblock and 9 cars at the northern one. On our way to Huwwara we see many vehicles on their way to the roadblock.
About 8:00 a.m.
Our welcome is the shriek of a female soldier to a Palestinian: "Yallah!" The pedestrian traffic into Nablus is heavy. Many of them are students, among them many females. Later in the shift the number of pedestrians to Nablus lessens.
It is very cold and rainy, and the picture of the cleaner struggling with a puddle in the inspection area with a mop, is repeated.
There are 9 vehicles in the queue from Nablus. The usual process: the passengers, apart from the driver, alight a few metres before the roadblock and wait until the vehicle examination is completed, about a minute or two if the cars are not checked, sometimes longer if the boot is checked. It doesn't matter whether it is very cold and pouring with rain, and of course the army is not worried whether the passengers are dressed for the weather or not.
There is no vehicle traffic into Nablus.
We are asked to go to Beit Iba and leave the roadblock. A few minutes later we find out that there is no need to go there.
There are 3 cars at the exit and one at the entrance.
A Border Police jeep observes the exit from the village. (This morning, when we passed by, there was no military vehicle parked there.)