Qalandiya

Observers: 
Chana Stein (translating), Ronit Dahan-Ramati (reporting and pictures)
16/05/2018
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Morning

05.30.  The queues which extended slightly beyond the shed were orderly and advanced at a reasonable pace. All 5 checkpoints were open.  The beigel-seller and cigarette seller were absent, and the kiosk moved outside.

We met our friend H. who told us that the queues were now stretching further, and apparently the beigel seller could not reach the checkpoint because of the building rubble on the way.  Later we went outside and saw that metal borders erected at the entrance were arranged in such a way that the queues were turned aside and did not stretch in a straight line to the road. As a result, there was not a single paved road to pass on, but one had to go through a rough one (as shown in the picture).

In addition,we saw that the building in which new turnstiles have been affixed on the western side, was Fleishman’s report of the first Friday of Ramadan, that there were magnometers nearby and men passed through there and, apparently, through the doors nearby.

Metal partitions directing the line and gravel in what used to be parking
Metal partitions directing the line and gravel in what used to be parking
Photographer: 
Ronit Dahan-Ramati
New Turnstiles
New Turnstiles
Photographer: 
Ronit Dahan-Ramati

On a wall we saw posters advertising legal services and help in applying for permits of various types. One notice was that of a lawyer’s company, the other of some organization.

Advertising legal services
Advertising legal services
Photographer: 
Ronit Dahan-Ramati

Towards 6 a.m. people were waiting for the humanitarian gate to open. Most women went to join the regular lines. In the end the gate opened at 6.15.  Today there were many children – schoolchildren and children who came with their parents. The guards explained to us that, because of preparations for Ramadan, the lane for public transport had been closed, and so today they were passing through on foot.

Outside were some people having breakfast in the shade of the new metal partitions.

Breakfast in the shade of the metal partitions
Breakfast in the shade of the metal partitions
Photographer: 
Ronit Dahan-Ramati

Towards 7 o’clock the lines were very short and there were times when the turnstiles were left open. We waited on the Palestinian side as we were expecting a cancer patient from the Jordan Valley whom we were to take to Hadassah Hospital for treatment.  After a long wait, and with the help of people who could speak to him on the phone, we found that he had already passed and was waiting for us on the Israel side! We immediately headed for the sleeveinfo-icon, and it took us 20 minutes to pass. We met our patient.  Fortunately there were no serious traffic jams and we reached Hadassah by 8 o’clock.