Habla 1393, a minor does not pass without a certificate

Nina S. and Hertzlia A.

Opening Hours: 16:25 to 17:00

A routine day under the occupation steamroller – A young boy, a minor, was sent on his way, alone, as he doesn’t have a title deed.

16:20 When we arrived there were quite a lot of persons waiting, about thirty by rough estimate. Beyond the gate an Israeli civilian vehicle is parked. In the shed there are two women waiting. We sit next to them and they tell us that they are already waiting about an hour for the opening of the gate… Regrettably their working schedule does not coincide with the opening hours of the gatesinfo-icon…   probably they are not alone. Two more  women arrive.

16:25 Military policeman emerge from the civilian car. The military policewoman who sees Nina taking photos announces that she is requested not to photograph.

The passage progresses in an orderly manner. H., the brother of H. the owner of the sheep, asks Nina for her phone number in order to ask for her help if necessary. In the meantime the passage of the pedestrians advances according to the rules. The soldiers don’t make it difficult, but perform strict searches. All the time workers arrive after their working day, and all are searched in the shed near the gate. The search pavilion is not activated today.

Towards five o’clock single persons arrive, in a hurry to return home, and pass one after the other. Suddenly a posh car with two passengers comes from Habla. We see that a woman and a few girls follow the car on foot. When they approach a little we see that there is also a young boy, a minor, surely about 14 years old. The soldiers talk with them at length, and suddenly the boy furiously throws his bag on the floor and walks in the direction of the Habla gate, back. The mother tries to persuade the soldiers to let him pass. The boy shouts in her direction expressing objection, but then he joins them again, Nina asks the girls soldiers in the shed to try and solve the problem humanely, perhaps by calling the DCO. The girl soldiers do not react and the soldiers don’t enable his passage. He returns to Habla.

The soldier shuts the gate to Habla. One of the boy’s sisters comes and stands near us, and confirms the questions which were posed in a broken language, that her brother didn't present a title deed (an authorization regarding his address). They are of the Al-Ramadin tribe who live in the “Israeli” seamline region, that’s to say between the two “fences”, the one which was built by us and the Green Line. He is able to get home only by presenting authorizations. The mother asks us to help, but we were unable to do so. They go and sit in the shed, waiting for their brother to come and collect them. The boy will probably get somehow to the Eliyahu gate and somebody from his family will bring him the missing deed. How is it possible to send such a young boy by himself with the soldier remaining unconcerned – these are the rules – too sad. And indeed all of them – the sisters the mother and the boy himself are sad. What kind of life is this – to live under an occupation –  horrible. It reminds me of other people in another century who were only “following the orders”.