A telephone report - agricultural checkpoints: Far'un, Olive CP (623), Zeta
Telephone report - agricultural checkpoints
During the week I reported and tried to deal with several problems:
a. On Sunday, 15/10, a farmer from Deir Al-Ghusun that, on Friday or Shabbat morning, Eyal Salmon, the DCO official in Tulkarm, arrived the morning shift at the checkpoint and confiscated 25 agricultural permits. In answer to one of the other farmers' question about this, Eyal responded that it is none of his business, but later he remarked that the permits had been confiscated because the farmers went to work within Israel.
The same farmer said that the proof which had been provided by the DCO and the army was that there were traces of cement on their clothing, which was certainly appropriate for any kind of work. It seems as though they expect that the Palestinians would be able to purchase shirts appropriate for any occasion - whether it be farm work, building work and even weddings...
b. Yesterday, S. called me from Phar'un and said that the local council had written on Facebook that checkpoint 704 at Phar'un would not open and the farmers should go to the Irtah/Ephraim checkpoint, or tractor owners to checkpoint 407, Jubara/Teenim. I was able to find out yesterday, 17/10, that there was no such notice. So, this morning, the farmers decided to go to the Phar'un checkpoint, but they found it closed.
They checked again at the DCO and reported that, for reasons they were not able to share with me, it would be closed for several days and then, it seems, would open again. Reminder: they have been trying for a long time to close the Phar'un checkpoint and perhaps they are making another attempt at that.
c. At 8:50, a farmer called me from the Zeita checkpoint to tell me the checkpoint had not opened. He claimed that they had been there since 8:00. The liaison officer told me that the checkpoint should be open from 8:30 - 9:00, but the soldiers were late. The checkpoint in fact opened at 9:00.
Someday, one of us should write a book about the occupation clock and its marvelous flexibility!