Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked

Observers: 
Rachele H. and Noa L. (Reporting). Marcia L., translation
02/12/2017
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Morning

06:55-07:25 – Tura Checkpoint
On the West Bank side, people and cars already wait for the checkpoint to open.  The soldiers arrive at 07:05, and take time to organize, and the first person exits the opening of the sleeveinfo-icon (the enclosure leading to the terminal) at 07:20.  In the meantime, there was a small accumulation of cars on the side of the Seamline Zone. However, at this point, the passage is quick for both the cars and the pedestrians.

It looks like today there are fewer workers than usual, going in both directions.

07:35-08:10 – Barta’a-Reihan Checkpoint

The number of people passing through this morning is enormous. Many people go up the sleeve from the terminal and wait in the parking lot for transportation to work.  There are 4 working windows in the terminal, and a long line in front of them,.  The passage from the entrance to the exit seems to be quick.  We timed about 10 minutes per person. The number of people lessened gradually and two windows were closed.

As we arrived, one man came to us with a question:  Is it true that there will be a strike tomorrow and the checkpoint will be closed?  We told him we hadn’t heard that, but we would try to find out. During our stay at the checkpoint, a number of other people asked the same question. One of the checkpoint workers answered:  “No one knows. Maybe yes, maybe no.”  That is, maybe hundreds of people might arrive at sunrise and wait for the checkpoint to open. . . Indeed, from that standpoint, there is no difference between Israel and the Occupied West Bank. At the writing of this report this morning, Sunday, 03.12.2017, it is reported on the radio that there is a strike and that the checkpoints are closed.

In the parking lot, two people who are banned from entering Israel, came to us for help.  We passed on to them the magical slips of paper with Sylvia’s telephone number. “Will that help?”  Sometimes yes and sometimes no, we try to answer. With that we received a long lecture, the summary of which is: “I did something for which I received a fine and imprisonment. I paid my debt to society. Why now am I blacklisted?  What is the logic of this? Why can’t you take care of this?  Aren’t you the group that listens to us and demands a correction?  Why can’t you do something about this?  You have power.  How is it that Israel, the strongest country in the world, acts this way, illogically, at the expense of the people who only want to support their families?”  It is clear that our response (“There is no logic; we don’t have much power, and it looks like we might be punished in the future for our activities. . . “) did not satisfy them, or us.