Hashmonaim (Ni'ilin), Makkabim (Beit Sira)

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Na’alin checkpoint

At about 05:35 we arrived at Na’alin, also known as Hashmonaim Crossing. We crossed in our car and parked at the side of the road shortly afterwards. We saw a sick youth being supported by both parents. They took him to the pedestrians' gate next to the vehicle checkpoint.  A person in a wheelchair was already there with his companion.  They were all let through. On the other side wait the volunteers of “Be-derekh le-hahlamah,” who will transport them to hospitals in Israel.

We crossed the road and stood next to the spot where people jump over the security fence and go down a dirt track towards the checkpoint. Ramadan is over and once again, there are food kiosks.  The queue stretches from the checkpoint building, and today it splits into two, on either side of the square in front of the building. We picked a person in conspicuous clothing to see how long he took to pass and returned to the vehicles.

The person checking vehicles already knows who we are. A careful check of the cars and then we are allowed to pass, and park on the Israeli side. Here there is a lot of activity. Many cars around the square and in the parking lot mostly buses and minibuses to take workers to their work. We went towards the exit of the checkpoints. The lavatory cubicle is open for the public. People exit rapidly. The kiosk is open and the blue tarpaulin that has covered it during Ramadan was removed. People tell us that the situation today is all right, but on Sundays, there are always more people (some remain in Israel during the week). “Our” man passed within 22 minutes.

Beit Sira checkpoint

We drove towards Bet Sira (Maccabim) checkpoint, shortly after 6 o’clock, and parked on the side of the road in the direction of Modi’in. Along the road many cars are waiting for workers and many workers waiting for their transport. Here, too, the tarpaulin that hid the kiosk during Ramadan, has been removed. And here, too, we chose a man in conspicuous clothing, who was coming from S’fa and Beit A’war al-Tahta.  We stopped for a moment to buy a drink at the kiosk and almost missed “our” man, who exited after four minutes. We left.