'Anabta, Ar-Ras, Jubara (Kafriat), Tue 4.12.07, Afternoon

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Yael S., Zehava G.,Amit Y. (reporter), Bregje P. (guest)

14:00 - Jubara entrance
As we open the gate two soldier run towards us; who are we and where are we going? They are courteous and allow us to continue on our way, but let it be clear who is master around here.

14:05, Jubara, Children’s gate
There is a large pile of ID’s at the checkpoint. There’s a funeral in the village today, and the soldiers allowed people who are not Jubara residents and who don’t hold the special permit to enter the village to attend the funeral. But these people were required to leave their IDs with the soldiers until they leave the village.
Outside of the village a middle-aged man is waiting; he’s been there for two hours, he tells us. He is a resident of A Ras, but he owns agricultural land in Jubara. He holds a valid special permit needed to enter the village for cultivating his land. As in many other days, today he came with his tractor; but unlike other days, today the soldiers claim that he needs an additional special permit to bring the vehicle into the village. He is frustrated and he asks us if we can help. I call the Humanitarian Center, and they transfer me to the DCO at Qalqiliya. There, of course, the soldier is clueless; he doesn’t even know that there exists a village by the name of Jubara. I ask for the number of the Tul Karem DCO; with them the discussion is much effective. The soldier promises to check the situation and call back. 15 minutes later nothing has happened, so I call the DCO again. The soldier is surprised that the problem hasn’t been solved already; she explains that when a person has a permit to cultivate his land in Jubara he needs no other permit to bring in tools, including a tractor. I pass this information on to the soldiers, and they respond that they’ll let the man in with his tractor today, but it’s a special concession due to our presence there. This irritates me, and I call the DCO again and the soldier there to speak directly with the soldiers at the checkpoint and explain to them that the permission is principled rather than special. She agrees to talk with them, but they refuse to take my phone and talk with her. When I ask her what will happen tomorrow, she promises to speak with the relevant officers who will make sure the soldiers at the checkpoint follow orders. I’m less than assured, but it seems that there’s nothing more we can do at the moment.

14:10 - A Ras
Meanwhile Yael and Zehava continued to A Ras checkpoint.
There, they report, traffic is scarce. Nonetheless, the soldiers keep themselves busy: the guys along with a woman soldier and a specially trained dog all are fiddling with a side mirror of a detained car. The dog smelled something, they declare, and thus the mirror-party goes on for about 15 minutes. They finally manage to dismantle the mirror, and they rejoice: they found something! What? They can’t give this kind of information to the women of Machsom Watch, they say. But the mirror is quickly reattached to the car and the driver and car are quickly released to continue on their way as they please. (Well, at least as they please until the next roadblock...)

14:50 - Anabta
About 10 cars waiting to enter Tul Karem; about 14 waiting to exit. The soldiers conduct sample checks: some cars are waived barely stopping, while others are stopped and all IDs of all passengers are inspected.