Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked, Ya'bed-Dotan

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Yoheved Gonen, Neta Golan Translation: Bracha B.A.

16:10 – Tura Shaked Checkpoint

The checkpoint is quiet and almost empty.  Only a few people are crossing.

There is a pleasant commotion near the checkpoint.  An entire family of about 20 men, women, and young people are panting tobacco.  Even the elderly mother is helping.   They are residents of the nearby village of Dahar Al Malakh.  They bought the plants in Tulkarem and encountered difficulties when trying to bring them across to the seamline zone at Shaked – Tura Checkpoint.  In the end Major T. allowed them to bring the plants across.   The "spokesman" for the family told us the story, and proudly explained that they had rented a tractor to remove the stones and plow the field.  He asked us not to take pictures because women were present.

We drove past Reihan – Barta'a checkpoint.  The parking lot is still full as well as the additional parking lot.  About a dozen tenders are waiting to cross with merchandise tomorrow morning.   

The "bridge" is closed as usual and cars are parked on either side.  We drive on to Chermesh.   The signs report that new houses are being built and there is still and electronic fence there.   The iron gate that once blocked the road to Kafin and Tulkarem is now open as usual as it has been for the past few years.  We continue in the direction of Yaabed and Mevo Dotan.   The gate on the road from Emricha to Yaabed is locked.

17:00 – Yaabed – Mevo Dotan Checkpoint

The checkpoint is manned, but cars drive through in both directions without delay.  A soldier approaches us and wants to make sure we are OK and says that we have to be careful.

17:30 – Reihan Barta'a Checkpoint, Seamline Zone Side

People are returning from work in Israel and in the seamline zone, mainly in Barta'a.   One person is carrying a large pizza that he bought in Arara.   A few people cross to the seamline zone.  Parents cross with two small children.   One is crying because he hit his head.  The father claims that the accident happened at the checkpoint.  It is not clear what happened.

18:00 When we walk up the sleeveinfo-icon on our way to the parking lot to go home, we hear complaints as usual about the crossing at Irtah – Shaar Ephraim in the morning.  This time one of the people complains about the crossing in the morning at Jalameh as well.  If people were allowed to cross at Barta'a Reihan in the morning it would make things much easier for those who live in the area of Jenin who work in Israel.  It is also closer to their homes and less crowded.