Eyal Crossing, Mon 6.7.09, Morning
Civil intelligence have been operating the check point for the past four days and it seems like the workers are the ones who have to pay the price of the change. They are full of complaints about the long waits, overcrowding and wasting of time.
A high fence and concrete blocks make it impossible to look over to the Palestinian side.
A random count we conducted showed about 10 people passed every minute.
There are many pauses in the passage of people, often accompanied with the shutting of doors.
4:40 – the doors are closed for a relatively long period. There is a group of merchants standing in a separate fenced area. They were told that they had to wait until 5:00.
5:00 – there are eight open checking booths and yet the passage is still slow. According to one of the security people there is a worker that evaded the metal detector and they are now searching for them – that is the reason for the delay.
A random count we conducted showed about 5-11 people passed every minute.
The security person tells us that they allow the transferring of personal food supplies. The workers complain they are prohibited from getting water and liquids.
A random count we conducted showed about 9 people passed every minute.
We talked to someone who looks like he is one of the managers of the checkpoint; we did not ask for his name. He told us that restrictions are according to guidelines by the ministry of defense and the GSS. There is a restriction on frozen water and soft drinks. The amount of food is not restricted but needs to be in small packages that can be inspected.
6:00 – People come out angry and cursing.
There are increasing complaints about long waiting times, humiliating attitude in the inspection rooms, double checks in the inspection rooms and checking booths. The noise can be heard all the way outside.
Those who are praying are directed far from the opening. The place is dirty.
A man who must leave for tests at Shiva Hospital said he asked that a separate area be designated for praying in order to keep it clean. His request has yet to be answered.
7:00 – Nava and Snaiit arrive with a reporter. They have come from Irtach and tell about a quiet and reasonable passage.
Simple calculations show that the average workers wastes between 3-5 hours a day waiting at the checkpoints, not to mention feelings of humiliations and helplessness that they feel.
7:20 – we leave even though there are probably many more people waiting to pass beyond the “iron curtain.”