Qalandiya - notice about vaccinations at the checkpoint

Facebook Twitter Whatsapp Email
Chana Stein (translating), Ronit Dahan-Ramati (reporting and pictures)
הודעה על מבצע חיסונים במחסום

A quiet morning at Qalandiya.

06.15.  Mild weather. Many people already on the Jerusalem side. Groups sitting on the low wall, waiting for their transport, greet us. One person we asked about vaccinations, said that he had an appointment for one at checkpoint 300 (Bethlehem) next week. Such appointments are arranged by employers. Workers at Atarot have a vaccination station there. Later we found that on Sunday there had been vaccinations at Qalandiya for residents of east Jerusalem and people eligible for family unification (this was told us by security personnel inside).

A steady stream of people on the pedestrian bridge, which is still relatively clean on the Jerusalem side. The Palestinian side of the checkpoint was calm. All three entrances were open and there were no lines. At one entrance was a notice about vaccinations on 8.3.21 for those over 16, pregnant women, teachers – from all Kupoth Holim. So perhaps they also vaccinated such people who are Palestinians who are not from the annexed parts of the city.

אבו רמזי, ידידנו מוכר הבייגלה במחסום קלנדיה

We met Abu Ramzi who now sells his bagels at the al-Ram-facing entrance, now that the entrance facing Qalandiya is closed. He had with him his 15-year-old grandson, who has no school today because of the pandemic and so is helping his grandfather. (He did not want to be photographed.) Because of family complications, Abu Ramzi is responsible for a daughter and grandchildren. Though he is now 70, he still has to work to support them not having any pension or Social Security. When younger he worked on a crane for big Building firms in Israel – Solel Boneh, Lifschitz, and others, but stopped when he was 50. Then, looking for a livelihood, he came to selling bagels… He arrives at 4.15-4.30 and waits till he has sold all his wares.  When we parted from him, he had almost finished.

We returned to the checkpoint itself where everything seemed to be in order and entered at 7 o'clock.  Inside, of the 6 package-checking stations 3 were operating, but lines were short and quick. We did not check how many electronic stations were open because there was clearly no pressure. Also at the personal document-checking station, there was no line. Altogether we passed through the whole checkpoint in fewer than 10 minutes.