Eyal Crossing, Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Tue 30.6.09, Morning

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Semadar B, Ziona O,


 B and I arrived at the CP at 04:00. We saw in the roster that Dalia Golomband Raya Yaron were scheduled for the dawn shift and we wanted to meet them. The elder women-laborers were sitting at the head of the queue and when they heard the mouazinfrom Irtah and Far'oun calling to pray at 04:00, they began praying. 

We saw in the dark that the queue of waiting people was long and stretched to the sheds where food was sold. The examiners let people enter quickly and until 05:20 there weren't many people waiting in the queue. We heard shouting from the installation and it seemed to us that the examiners wished to  conceal the laborers from us and put them quickly into the installation where they are crowded and packed, but we cannot see or photograph this. The crowding and pressure inside cause them mental and physical damage.

The day before yesterday a laborer had a heart attack and had to be removed to hospital. At about 05:20 Raya and Dalia appeared and told us that they wanted to photograph the laborers leaving the installation and came to us only after that. They said that this was their first visit at Irtah. After a conversation with Raya I drove her and Semadar to the parking lot of the installation crew. An armed guard came to us and said that we were forbidden to park because that was a private terrain. He demanded that we leave the parking lot as it was private property

I asked him to whom the area belonged and he said "Modi'in Ezrahi". I told him that that wasn't a military area and we had a right to stand there. He said he was going to talk to the director and disappeared without returning to us. A quarter of an hour later Raya and Dalia proceeded to other checkpoints. We too left and drove to the EyalCP

We arrived at the Eyal CP around 07:00. We saw about 300 laborers in the parking aread at the exit and many cars waiting for them. Some we waiting for those who were still being checked at the installation. The installation is completely new. Since Sunday all the activity at the installation is performed by a private contractor. It is not clear who the contractor is. At Eyal there is no possibility of seeing, from the Israeli side, the workers waiting in the queue to enter the installation. It seems to us that the installation was planned in such a way as to make it impossible for the MachsomWatch women to see what happens to the waiting people

They told us that it is forbidden to transfer at Eyal any liquid, even tap water. They showed us the food bags and explained what is allowed to bring. They are not allowed to bring tuna-fish tins, no food in tins. It is forbidden to bring coffee, sugar, olive oil, cooked food brought from the home. Sausage, they said the food doesn't suffice. Many complained that they remain hungry during the whole working-day. They told us that in the installation they stand in two queues, one for young men and one for older ones

The queue of the young men advances slowly, because most of the must undergo additional checks. Sometimes they are kept in the rooms for an hour an a half. In a small room sometimes about 30 to 40 people are crowded. The workers told us that the installation opens at 04:30. Many said that their situation was better when the army operated the installations and allowed them to bring work utensils, food and drink. And even to bring children for a holiday in Israel. At the parking lot we saw just one drinking fountain, and there, out of 4 taps only 2 operated, and were hot

Furthermore we found two buildings that were supposed to operate as toilets. In both there are no lavatories, and many have to defecate on the floor. Around 08:00 we left the place in which about 200 people remained