Deir Sharaf, Tue 30.6.09, Afternoon

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Dani S. (guest), Riba B., Nur B. (reporting and photographing); Translator: Charles K.

15:25  The article [by Amos Har'el and Avi Issacharoff in Ha'aretz -CK] reports that the Beit Iba checkpoint has been removed, and in fact it isn't operating today.  The article doesn't mention the Deir Sharaf checkpoint down the road, one kilometer away to the south, which began operating immediately after the Beit Iba checkpoint ceased inspecting traffic.  The checkpoint is manned by three soldiers and a fourth in the observation tower.  Traffic going through is inspected at random.  We asked the checkpoint commander what "random" means.  "What looks suspicious to me," he answers.  "What's ‘suspicious'?", we asked.  "I don't know, how it looks, how it seems to me," he replied.

(We intended to go up to the Shavei Shomron checkpoint where, according to the article, no inspections at all are conducted.  The soldiers insisted that Israeli vehicles aren't allowed to proceed past the Deir Sharaf checkpoint (Not true.  It isn't Area A).  Since we wanted to see many checkpoints today, and since we knew from previous observations that no inspections have been conducted at Shavei Shomron for some time now - we gave up.)