Burin (Yitzhar), Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Thu 2.9.10, Afternoon

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Ada H., Yehudit L. (reporting and photographing)

  Translator:  Charles K.

  Flyinf checkpoints at burin and route 60 and at Sara and route 60 

14:55  A traffic jam at the Ariel industrial zone.  While moving forward slowly, we see on the right a parked vehicle facing the traffic.  A policeman stands beside it, a spike barrier on the road.  Soldiers are also on the other side of the road.  It’s not clear whether there’s been an accident or something else.  The traffic jam quickly evaporates.

The checkpoint at the entrance to Kifl Haris is manned by soldiers.

16:25  Za’tara checkpoint – about 30 Palestinian vehicles (coming from the direction of Nablus) wait to go through the checkpoint. 
Harsh posters opposing the peace conference, etc., hang fearlessly everywhere in next to the checkpoint, including the plaza under the soldier’s station, without interference.

Very heavy Palestinian vehicular traffic both from the direction of Ramallah and from Nablus.

You can feel the army’s presence.

16:28  Flying checkpoint at Burin-Route 60.  A command car is parked across half the road, two soldiers with weapons pointed at those approaching the checkpoint.  A spike barrier across the other half of the road.  It turns out this road was blocked to Palestinian vehicles yesterday also.  Is it to keep the area sterileinfo-icon on behalf of the settlers in Yitzhar?  It is very reminiscent of the sterile area for the settlers of Itamar and Alon Moreh – the Madison route that, as you know, is an apartheid road.

16:30  Huwwara checkpoint – The checkpoint is crowded.  Very heavy vehicle traffic.  Sometimes the soldiers stop a vehicle, and then release it.

We drove back toward the Burin-Route 60 interchange – where, as we said, a flying checkpoint has been there for two days.

Driving on Route 60 the difference between the heavy traffic we saw previously and the desolation of this road was noticeable.  When we reached the turn to Kafr Sara in one direction and Kafr Jit in the other we saw the checkpoint blocking the portion of the road now forbidden to Palestinians.

A command car is also parked here across the road, soldiers with drawn weapons not allowing Palestinian vehicles to go through, only those with Israeli license plates.  In other words, settlers.  The soldiers at the checkpoint say, “It’s for security reasons.”

As far as the Palestinians are concerned, this lengthens (by half an hour) their journey and makes it harder because of the increased traffic:  for example, someone who wants to go from the village of Huwwara to Jit has to go to Nablus and come out through Sara; someone who wants to go from Tulkarm to Ramallah has to go into Nablus and from there come out through the Huwwara checkpoint.