Abu Dis, Container (Wadi Nar), Tue 16.3.10, Morning
En route to our usual shift, we noticed a huge number of blue police, border police, and soldiers near the gas station at the entry to Issawiya. From our vantage point, we could not see any direct disturbances, but we heard the constant sound of gun fire and saw helicopters overhead. Some of the people who were standing around said that there have been clashes since early morning.
Continuing on via "Pope Road" toward the Hebrew University, we saw about 5 police vans parked along the road near the entry to the Hadassah helipad.
We entered Azariah where things seemed to be quiet, but some of the people that we know there said that there were disturbances in both Azariah and Abu Dis during the day. Interestingly enough, there were no police or military at the exit of the village.
Wadi Naar has never been quieter -- perhaps because of the closure. There were almost no vehicles going in either direction, although there seemed to be more security personnel around than usual.
On our way back, we drove right into a demonstration taking place near the entry to the Hebrew University. On one side of the street were Arab students, on the other Jewish ones -- many of them wearing "Im Tirtzu" tee shirts. As we were driving by, we were stopped by two ambulances -- the first was a Red Crescent ambulance that picked up one of the Arab demonstrators. (We could not see just who was being lifted in). The second ambulance was one of Magen David Adom which seemed to be on a regular call.
At the top of the hill, opposite the entry where one turns left to get to Hadassah, there was a huge contingent of Border Police who had just emerged from the Arab village behind the hospital. We tried to get a better look at what was going on in Issawiya, but couldn't. However, we did hear the sound of the shooting going on there.
The police force was still in evidence along "Pope Road" as well as at the entry to Issawiya.
Qedar update: Building there continues unabated. The settlement has been doubled in the last year and now, during the "building freeze", the bulldozers are still working all speed ahead preparing yet more lands for building more houses -- in addition to the 30 or so foundations ready for yet more houses.