Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked

Rachael Hayut (photographs), Noa Lavid (reporting)
Shaked checkpoint not open until 7.30 because the keys to the gates could not be found.
Rachel Hyut

Tura-Shaked checkpoint 06.50 - 08.00

People are already waiting in front of the turnstile on the W.Bank side, and in front of the closed gatesinfo-icon on the seam zone side. At 7.10 there is still no sign of the soldiers who work the checkpoint. We therefore phoned the Menashe territorial brigade. They said they knew of the delay, but soldiers would arrive immediately. At 7.30 there was still no sign of soldiers, the waiting queues on both sides got longer, including cars, a horse on the W. Bank  side and a donkey on the seam zone side. We again called the brigade – it turned out that the soldiers had reported that the delay was due to a “balagan about the keys”, but they would come any moment. And indeed, 5 minutes later a transport arrived unloading 4 Military Policemen, who quickly opened the gate and operated it immediately, so that the first person waiting emerged from the sleeveinfo-icon at 7.40.  Afterwards pedestrians passed quite quickly, but passage of cars was delayed: First pass the cars from the W. Bank to the seam zone, and afterwards in the opposite direction.  When we left at 8 o’clock not all had passed – that means that there were people who waited at the checkpoint a full hour (!). Workers arriving after a night shift in the industrial area, who waited with us in front of the closed gate, told us that all week there were delays in opening the gates in the morning.

Barta’a – Reןhan checkpoint 08.10 – 08.35

When we arrived, relatively late, the upper parking lot was crowded with cars, but quite empty of people.  Most had already left. From the terminal there were still additional people exiting and traffic was quite busy. In the terminal two windows were open and there was a long queue in front of them. Someone coming out said “Today is not good.  Slow. It took 15 minutes to pass.”

Perhaps minor, but annoying -  A woman’s dress was caught by a metal wire protruding in the turnstile as she was going out towards the W. Bank.

In the upper parking lot, 2 shade shelters have been added, at the expense of 4 parking spots.