Beit Furik, Huwwara, Za'tara (Tapuah), Tue 29.4.08, Afternoon
13.48 Some hundred metres behind the checkpoint which enters the occupied territories, Shomron CP, and on the left side of the road is a black tent and inside it soldiers with rifles and binoculars whose object is to catch people trying to enter Israel without permits and to punish them. Most of these people are looking for work.
The entrance and exit of Marda are still closed to vehicles
14.05 At Za'tara
Posters of the settlers recommending that people spend Passover in Hebron so as to strengthen the settlement there. 10 cars in both directions waiting to be checked.
Pedestrians leaving Nablus are checked and cars entering and exiting also. Those checking are soldiers and also military police and also a dog trainer. Those being checked strip and put their belonging in the x-ray device. They are sent to the other side of the checkpoint so as to put their parcels into the x-ray machine. Most of the soldiers do not speak Arabic. Women soldiers order elderly men to show their stomachs and the young soldiers check the bags of old women. The man guarding them chases away the young people waiting for friends who are still in line and does so rudely. Most of the guards point their weapons straight at those being checked. A young man is detained in the isolation. Later a soldier brings another young man, handcuffed and blindfolded, pulling at his shirt and who does not resist. And later another man in the same situation and now there are three in this small cell.
H., the brother of the first young man says that they are mechanics and work at Funduk. His brother was going on foot to his work and when he went past Yitzhar he was stopped by soldiers. The second man as we are told later by a friend is from the refugee camps of Balata. Last night the soldiers came to look for him and he was not at home. Today he had come to the checkpoint to give himself up. The third is a man who accompanied him and the soldiers decided to detain him too.
About half an hour later the person responsible for the checkpoint said to H. that his brother would be freed in half an hour. We understand that the young man's details were checked and there is no reason to delay him and that he is simply being punished. The soldiers are police and judge.
An army jeep 703818 arrives and takes the blinded prisoner and 10 minutes later comes back and takes his friend and we understand that they have been taken to the neighbouring army camp. The mechanic is freed. We left at 16:00.
At the hitching spot a soldier guards settlers.
At Beit Furik we could not see the end of the line but there were more than 10 cars. The soldiers do not allow us to approach and close the checkpoint when we insist. There is a detainee who shouted to us that he had been there two hours.
At 16.20 we left.
In the black tent a soldier watches the hills.