Soon the farmers of Deir al Ghusun will not be able to get to their fields

Observers: 
Karin A., Ruti Tuval (reporting) Translation: Bracha Ben-Avraham
Mar-26-2017
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Morning

06:45 – Deir al Ghusun agricultural Checkpoint

 

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 Deir al Ghusun agricultural Checkpoint                                                 photo Ruti Tuval  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is an agricultural checkpoint that lies at the end of a long winding dirt road.  It operates as an agricultural checkpoint except for the fact that it is open every day.  Farmers and workers were waiting in back of the gate on the Palestinian side.  There is a gate in the middle of the checkpoint and another on the seamline zone side.  The farmers from Deir al Ghusun have hundreds of dunams of olive groves on the western side of the separation fence outside the Wet Bank.  Most of these fields are located on the hills along Wadi Carch along the road leading to the checkpoint and o the surrounding hills.

The soldiers arrived at 07:05.  They sent groups of 5 workers to two soldiers who were waiting for them on the other side of the concrete roadblocks and the man and woman soldier checked their papers.  Tractors and pedestrians crossed quickly.  The tractors picked up all the workers.  Some sat on the wagons while others sat on the sides of the tractor while others stood on a plant hanging in back.  Two soldiers made sure that workers who had already crossed did not get close to the checkpoint, claiming that this was to prevent the Palestinians from trying to get through the checkpoint.  At 07:45 the last tractor drove through.   

The permits of most of the farmers are about to expire and they are aware of the lack of cooperation between the Israeli and Palestinian Liaison and Coordination Administrations.  Kareen, who comes to this checkpoint more often, has promised to try and take care of the matter of the permits next time.  On our way back we drove through the remains of a demolished village where we shared a cup of coffee with a father and his son who were working in a fava bean field in their olive grove.  Kareen drove me back to my car and went to work while I continued on to the next checkpoint.   

09:10 – Barta'a Reihan Checkpoint

The parking lots were all full.  Not many people are crossing at this time of day.  A group of workers returned to the West Bank after finishing the night shift.   The owner of a garage in Barta'a entered the inspection facility at 09:15 and came out six minutes later at 09:21.  He asked me to come every day because is usually takes him a half an hour to get through the checkpoint.  A lot of trucks and several cars are still waiting for their turn to be checked.  

10:00 – Tura – Shaked Checkpoint

Only a few people are crossing at this time.  One car was detailed for an unusually long time.  Apparently the soldiers were listing drivers' phone numbers.