Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked

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Karin A. (driving), Roni S. (reporting). Translation: Bracha B.A


05:15 – Barta'a Checkpoint

Many workers are waiting for their rides and many drivers are waiting for passengers.  As mentioned before, there is nowhere to sit and no shade, but everyone is happy to have gotten through the checkpoint.

05:50 – The Palestinian Side, Entrance to the Terminal

There is a very long and orderly double line from the road to the entrance. Taxis are dropping off passengers. There is order and no dangerous confusion of cars and people like in the upper exit. The parking lot is orderly and the Palestinian security guards work quietly and politely, and the workers seem pleased with the arrangement.   About 100 people enter the turnstile at one time but move through quickly before the turnstile opens again.

05:45: We picked two workers who entered the terminal and then went up to the upper exit at the end of the sleeveinfo-icon, to see when they would come out. We saw one exit after 10 minutes but didn't find the other one.  The booths for checking certificates are operating.

06:26 – Tura Checkpoint

The checkpoint is still empty since the soldiers are due to open it at 06:30.  On the Palestinian side we can see and hear people who are waiting. On Sundays through Wednesdays the checkpoint is supposed to open at 06:00, so that workers can get to work on time. On Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays it is apparently not important to get to work on time, so it only opens at 07:00.  At 06:30 we called the Liaison and Coordination Administration and were told that the checkpoint would open 15 minutes late. At 06:36, we saw three soldiers slowly making their way down the road.  Six soldiers are required to open the checkpoint. Four arrive by 06:45. We hear loud shouting from the Palestinian side. A driver next to us says that the workers are late every day and some miss their entire workday because of the soldiers' tardiness and disregard. People are very angry and the Liaison and Coordination Administration does not help.

At 06:50 the two soldiers who were late slowly arrived.  The first Palestinian comes through at 06:58. The rest come out slowly with long delays in between. At 07:20 there were still many workers waiting to cross. There is a lot of shouting, people are not moving, and we are told that today is particularly bad. There is a lot of anger, complaints, and frustration.    

07:45 – We left, but there were still a lot of workers waiting.