Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim)
Dawn. Another calm day.
3:45 On our way to the separation barrier we heard something from the loudspeaker, and figured that the gates were opening on time. The first people to get through the checkpoint came out three minutes later, but the exit turnstiles still weren't open. A small crowd collected before they opened, two minutes later, after the guard at the entrance spoke to the guards inside.
After checking progress by the separation barrier, we walked around to the exit again. Only one of the turnstiles was working. We reported this to the guard, who said they knew and were working on it. Soon the turnstile started turning again.
Three people who we were watching for, who entered the building around 3:55, got out eight minutes later.
Around 4:10 we picked more people to watch for. Two of them got out in eight minutes, but the other two didn't appear after more than half an hour. We don't know if they were turned back, or if they were held up inside and did get through eventually. If they were held up, worry about that, eventuality would explain why people come so early, and why they lie down and go to sleep on the ground once they've made it through.
While we were waiting by the exit, our presence concerned a group of men who had just come out. One of them asked us what we were doing there. We explained and he said, then you're trying to help the workers? He went back and reassured his friends.
Today, again, there was no pressure at the entrance.
4:50 We left.