Northern checkpoints: breaches in the fence in this area are blocked

Twitter FB Whatsapp Email
Hannah Heller (photos), Neta Golan (report)

One after the other breaches are being sealed in the Separation Fence

15:10 Road 611
No cars are parked below the tiny hamlet (5 houses) of Luxor, no cars on the roadside of 611, no people seen crossing the Separation Fence. But nor did we see an orderly sealing of the breaches in the fence, or soldiers. We did see a large, new pile of earth keeping people away from the breach. The piles of earth keeping people from parking on the roadside, too, have remained in place.

15:30 Toura-Shaked Checkpoint

The breach in the Separation Fence near the village of Toura has been sealed with a new, shiny roll of barbed wire. Soldiers – male and female – approached us to find out who we are and what we’re doing there.

Palestinians are crossing the checkpoint in both directions. A driver who works in Toura and lives in Daher Al Maleh complains he’s been waiting at least for crossing in both directions. People returning to the West Bank from their work in the colony of Shaked, situated in the seam zone, complain that every morning the checkpoint is opened at 7:30 a.m. instead of 7 a.m.,  so in order not to be late for work they must cross the distant Barta’a Checkpoint in the morning.

15:00 Anin Checkpoint

The soldiers are present, and 25 farmers from Anin already wait to cross. For a long time we have seen nothing like this at the Anin Checkpoint. Here too the breach has been sealed with a shiny barbed wire. The soldiers ask who we are. Minutes before 4 o’clock, people line up in front of the gate, being ordered o do so, and the soldiers inspect and have them cross one by one. Some do not pass the first inspection and are sent to wait on the side. After another inspection 4 persons remain who do have a permit to work in Israel, but not a farmer’s permit. They wish to shorten their way home because of the Ramadan fast, but the soldiers do not relent and send them to the distant Barta’a Checkpoint. We gave two of them a ride in our car, and the others waited for another vehicle.

One of our acquaintances at the checkpoint told us that the transport vehicles to pray at Al Aqsa during the Ramadan do not leave from Barta’a and Toura this year as they did in recent years. Because of the present situation they leave only from Jenin and reach the Qalandiya Checkpoint. From there they have to fend for themselves to get to the mosque.

In view of the new situation, we are also asked to provide a note with Sylvia’s team phone numbers.

On the way to Barta’a Checkpoint, between the villages of Umm Dahar and Zebda, we notice an army tent. Our passengers tell us the soldiers have been guarding the breach in the fence that shorten the way to Toura.

16:30 Barta’a-Reihan Checkpoint, Seam Zone Side

Many people return from work at this time. Two of them are praying in the shed. TO our surprise some of those crossing over to the seam zone arrive in the long ‘sleeveinfo-icon’ (a pedestrian fenced-in track) rather than walking on the road through the vehicle checkpoint, as they had for quite a while. We come down the ‘sleeve’ with those returning from work who cross over to the West Bank through the turnstile. The terminal isopen for those crossing over to the seam zone. One person complains about crowding in the morning. He says he arrive as early as 3:30 a.m. in order not to miss his transport and lose a day’s work. He asks that the checkpoint be opened at 4 a.m. rather than at 5 a.m. Another complains that he is not allowed through in his car in spite of holding a permit. On our way back to the car park we notice that Palestinian traffic in both directions is scant, and that the vehicle inspection shed is nearly empty.

17:00 on our way home, we see several police cars in Harish city. Are the police searching for workers who do not have permits (illegal aliens) in spite of the sealed breaches in the Separation Fence?