Qalandiya

Place: 
Observers: 
Micky Honig (a new member) Ronit Dehan-Ramati (reporting); Translator: Hanna K.
Oct-6-2016
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Morning

We arrived at Qalandiya towards 05:10. We parked on the Israeli side and went over to the Palestinian side on foot. On the Israeli side there were already many people waiting for transportation. It was not yet dawn. On the Palestinian side it was almost empty. Five checking posts were open. We greeted the Beigel vendor and entered the empty shed. The queues were short and when the turnstiles at the end of the enclosures were opened, most of the  people waiting – sometimes even all of them – passed through. At the beginning there was only one queue or two. Then there were 3 queues at all the enclosures, but no pressure ensued and the queues did not spill over beyond the shed. Among the people passing there was also our friend H., who greeted us.

Around six o’clock the NCO woman from the DCO arrived and brought with her a few soldiers, probably trainees. One of them was armed with a camerainfo-icon and photographed the events continuously. Others photographed from time to time with their cellular phones. The NCO explained to them what was going on but did not open the humanitarian gate as there was no need: the regular queues were short and the passage was relatively quick.

When dawn came we went outside and approached the square in order to show Micky what was going on at the vehicle checkpoint.

On our way back we stopped at the kiosk, had a conversation with Iman and his friends and bought a glass of tea. Inside the situation was still acceptable enough. Later a policewoman and a policemen arrived and the DCO soldiers left. Apparently “everything OK”, the occupation routine. It was even relatively clean. Micky’s shock at the sight of the fences and enclosures reminded me how I have gotten used to the sight which are so difficult even on a day on which the passage is relatively quick.

At 06:30 we joined one of the queues and within about a quarter of an hour we came out at the Israeli side.