Qalandiya, Sun 10.1.10, Morning

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 Roni P, Ruti R

05:15 - a line stretching beyond the entrance to the hall. Noise, shouting and pushing. Again the game of arbitrary opening of the turnstiles. Number 4 sleeveinfo-icon is closed. Close to our arrival there was a shift change. A blonde female soldier was lacquering her fingernails. Now it was clear why she couldn't open the turnstiles till her nails dried, and then only for a few, once this turnstile, then another. Apparently according to the speed of her nail drying. After half an hour she was relieved by a male soldier. He did his utmost to repair the damage done by her. Three turnstiles opened and people flowed through, but it was already late. The lines remained long and people pushed and were angry. The Ecumenicals told us that, in their opinion, the male soldiers try to pass people through in orderly and methodical fashion, much more so than the women.

06:15 - the humanitarian line fills up. The policeman, a DCO representative and the guards arrive in time to open the humanitarian gate. I no longer have the strength to complain yet again about their failing judgement. It is important to note that the DCO rep was polite and ready to answer questions. But the policeman wouldn't let him, even when the armed civilian stood with drawn weapon facing us to "protect" him. The policeman said that there was a serious incident this week and they are forbidden to stand outside. What an absurdity... [L.W]