The checkpoint has a new commander, and he is hardening positions
06:00 - Barta’a Checkpoint
The upper parking lot is filled with people who already passed through the checkpoint and travel to work. The people who leave from the terminal greet us, wish us peace, and tell us that the passage is fast and they have no complaints. The Shekem kiosk is closed, and the Palestinian coffee seller, who sells coffee outside the checkpoint, says his coffee is finished.
A new supervisor has been appointed to the checkpoint. A taxi driver from Barta’a, who has a permit to cross the checkpoint, returns his wife, who is ill with cancer, from the hospital in Jordan, and is delayed at the inspection station, a ridiculously long time. When he complained, the new supervisor arrived, photographed the man’s identity card, and threatened him with future sanctions. The driver told us that there are a lot of complaints on the part of the residents of the Seamline Zone, and this morning, there was a meeting between the new supervisor and the head of the Barta’a-Sharkia Council.
On the continuation of the shut down next week, (for the holiday of Purim), there is, in the meantime, only gossip that it will be between Monday through Wednesday. A’ informed us that according to him, there will be an announcement on the radio. He also tells us that the closure (for elections) this week, and the closure for Purim, Shahak workers who are in the Seamline Zone, are not allowed to leave for work. With all the previous closures, they were allowed to pass through the checkpoint.
06:45 – Tura Checkpoint
Only now do they open the checkpoint. .About 20 people pass through to the Seamline Zone. One of them works at the factory in Shahak. Recently, she is late for work because the checkpoint doesn’t open on time. Cars pass in two directions and the passage is fast. One student passes through to the high school in Jenin.
07:05 - Junior high school girls begin to pass through to their school in the West Bank, and children arrive from the solitary home in a car, via the circuitous road around the checkpoint, and get out next to the checkpoint, on the side of the Seamline Zone.There, they wait for transportation to school in Umm Reihan.