Awarta, Azzun Atma, Burin/Yitzhar, Beit Furik, Huwwara, shomron crossing, Za'tara/Tapuach, Thur.26.9.13 morning

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Observing and reporting: Esti A., Nava E.

Translator:  Charles K.


Simhat Torah morning; the territories weren’t closed despite last week’s events


07:20  Azzun Atma:  We started late because we knew there wouldn’t be any laborers on line.  And the checkpoint was, in fact, empty of laborers.  A large group of Kfir soldiers who hadn’t gone home on leave for the holiday wait for a sole laborer.  A Palestinian who went through the fence is detained in the compound.  He’d been sent by the soldiers on patrol who’d caught him to wait for them at the checkpoint.  They said that when they finish their circuit they’ll bring his documents and release him.


Two ecumenical volunteers approach from the village.  They inquired about the holiday’s significance.  They said the second gate, near Beit Amin, has been closed since the person who murdered the soldier from Bat Yam had been caught there.


Shomron crossing:  No police at the exit from Israel.


07:55 Za’tara/Tapuach:  The experienced Border Police soldiers are on holiday leave, replaced by participants in a squad leaders course determined to succeed at their job.  Lines begin to extend up the hill.


Yitzhar/Burin checkpoints:  No military presence.

The village is quiet.  Children are already in school so there’s almost no traffic.  Most shops are still closed even though the hour is relatively late.


Awarta:  The yellow iron bar blocks the road.


08:35  Huwwara:  The checkpoint isn’t manned.  Because of the holiday there’s no soldier at the road up to Beracha and of course no one is guarding the hitchhiking station which is empty of settlers.  Heavy Palestinian traffic.


Yitzhar/Burin checkpoints:  No soldiers.


09:00  Za’tara/Tapuach:  Positions are manned, inspections continue.  On the assumption that settlers don’t drive on the holiday, the additional lane is closed.  So VIP vehicles and a few Israelis who do drive wait on the lengthening line.


Shomron crossing:  Only one lane open; almost no line.


Highway 5 – Smooth travelling to the Kfar Hayarok junctions.  A few cyclists.