Ar-Ras, Habla, Irtah (Sha'ar Efrayim), Wed 18.8.10, Morning
Translation: Suzanne O.
The gate is closed. On the other side there are a few tens of Palestinians waiting for the opening. Tom contacts the DCO. Answer: The people who should have been there had to go to another project which has caused the hold up.
A military vehicle arrives and two soldiers alight. We ask the reason for the hold up. Soldier: "If Arabs decide to jump over the fence in a different place... there are hold ups. There's nothing we can do."
We wait for the military police. Tom contacts the DCO again.
A jeep drives by without stopping. We approach the soldiers again and ask them to find out what is happening. Soldier: "If they make problems, this is what happens."
The gates finally open but still no one crosses.
The first people go in for inspection. The first five leave and, to our surprise, smile and greet us with "Good Morning", without getting angry.
Another five people cross through the gate. There are no complaints this morning.
We leave while there are still tens of people queuing, relatively quietly, to cross.
The traffic flows.
The turning onto Road 574 north: the slip road is not paved.
Jios - agricultural gate
We meet a man and a woman at the entrance, they live in Jios. They are at the gate observing like us. According to them the gate opened at 7:30 a.m., and closes at 8:15 a.m. This morning a number of farmers crossed. A young man crosses on foot and a second on a donkey.
We leave them and continue on northwards.
3 soldiers come over to us wanting to know who we are. We request permission to drive onto the Security road and after a quick telephone conversation it is granted and we drive to Te'enim Crossing. At the roadblock there are soldiers and police but all is quiet.