When we arrived at 5:30, we had steeled ourselves for crowds of people and considerable tension at the checkpoint on the first day after the week-long closure for Passover – and all for naught. No one came. Or, to be more exact, there was a trickle of people who immediately entered through the open turnstile at the end of the left-hand “cage.” Even when one and later a second of the five checking stations were closed, there was no build-up of lines entering the stations that would have caused the closing of the open turnstile in the shed and thus the creation of a standard line or lines there. A Reuters cameraman, who arrived with expectations similar to ours and was perplexed, ask where everyone was. We, in turn, asked the baigale seller, but he, too, had no explanation.
There was no need to operate the Humanitarian Gate. Nevertheless, the Civil Administration NCO came out at 6:15, took photographs of the empty shed, and left about 10 minutes later. At 6:30 we too passed through the open turnstile, passed through the security check within minutes, and left.