'Atarot, Ar-Ram, Qalandiya, Wed 4.2.09, Afternoon

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 Hana T and Ruti B

15:30 - 17:00 A short shift.  15:30 Beit Hanina, Shuafat.  A few
ambulances.  It's not sure what is happening.  We were not delayed at Ar Ram. 
Traffic was flowing.

16:00 Qalandiya.  From afar at the Atarot checkpoint, it appeared quite
empty.  The lane for traffic heading north was flowing without disturbance.  The
additional checkpoint that was functioning for the past weeks was done away
with.  There are two lanes open and there is a new sign, much larger than the
previous one saying that it is forbidden for Israelis to go in.  The sign is on
the northern side and its twin on the southern. 
16:15 At the pedestrian crossing, there are two lanes open and no
16:27 At the passage for vehicles from the north, there is a lot of
traffic.  We counted that it took between 10 and 15 minutes to pass
16:30  A Palestinian ambulance came from the north, was checked and there
was no delay.  Immediately, an ambulance of the Red Crescent arrived and there
was a back to back transfer.  Since we were on the northern side, we were only
able to photograph from afar. 
16:45There was th start up of congestion in the passageway for
pedestrians.  Initially, only one lane was open and then another was opened and
the passage was quick.  Thank heavens for small changes.  Two weeks ago, people
were passed one by one and now, 4 people enterered at once.  In Atarot, from
afar, therer is a lot of pressure.  We could not stay at the intersection. 
There was tremendous noise.  A new traffic circle is being built and at the
moment, it is partially closed near by the wall and of course, at the circle,
there is already an army position.  The border police did not .  volunteer to
give any explanations.  "You'll know when the time comes".  Two soldiers and a
soman soldier detained two children who were about 10 years old.  They poured
out the sacks in which they had collected small pieces of metal and apparently,
also provided them with an educational session.