Barta'a-Reihan, Tura-Shaked

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Alia Levi, Ruti Toval (observer, photographer), J.H. (translation)

5:45 Barta'a Riehan Checkpoint


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It is cold and wet in Barta’a checkpoint


This morning a long and winding line progresses very slowly. Groups of 40-60 laborers are guided through the only carousel at longer-than-usual intervals. When we exit later we hear from one of the guards that a laborer made a fuss in the terminal and that was why things were managed that way. A couple with five children pass through the women’s carousel. The kids run ahead seemingly accustomed to the crossing; it appears they’re returning from a weekend spent in the West Bank. Eight guys are returning home at their contractor’s instruction, due to the rain. True, they’re losing a work day but they’re planning to have breakfast and listen to Fairuz. A man tells us that he builds luxury villas for millionaires in Barta’a. He makes 500 shekels a day and is so proud.

At 6:20 forty laborers cross through the checkpoint. The line remains very long and we plan to return after going to Tura.


6:35 Tura Shaked Checkpoint


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            Crossing into the seam zone from the Tura checkpoint


The checkpoint opened on time and when we arrive no one is waiting by the carousel. Few cross by foot or car. Apparently the kids’ rides will arrive later because of the weather.

At 7:20 we return to the Barta’a checkpoint. The line is still long but disappears after ten minutes and then anyone who arrives goes directly into the terminal. We notice a new structure that was concealed earlier by the line. It’s located near the fence at the eastern end of the parking lot. The guard we spoke with confirms that it houses new bathrooms, since the others are very far away and adds: “We’re doing everything we can for them. Why not?”