Tora-Shaked checkpoint: a mentally ill Palestinian was shot on suspicion of trying to attack soldiers
Marina Banai and Ruthi Tuval
Translation: Bracha Ben-Avraham
From Y Net 13/5/23:
There was an attempted terrorist attack in the midst of the “Shield and Arrow” Campaign in Gaza. The attempted stabbing took place near the Tura Shaked Checkpoint that is adjacent to the settlement of Shaked. The terrorist, who was armed with a knife, was shot when he attempted to stab the soldiers who were present on Saturday, May 13th. It appears that the terrorist arrived at the checkpoint on a bicycle and ran towards the soldiers with a knife. He was then shot and killed. There were no other casualties.
The border patrol reported that “During the activity at crossing 300 in the sector of Merhavit Menashe the suspect ran towards the soldiers with a knife . The soldiers then opened fire and killed him. There were no injuries to our soldiers.”
Tura Shaked Checkpoint, which we visit on a weekly basis, is an extremely well-equipped checkpoint that is quiet and dirty. Two days after the event we were told by S., an acquaintance, that the man
who was shot was mentally ill. Today we received information that everyone in Yaabed knew that he was abnormal. He also said that since the border patrol had been in charge at the checkpoint women and children were afraid to cross there. The soldiers behave horribly, and before they arrived things were OK and “the soldiers spoke nicely.”
Later at the Barta’a Checkpoint a relative of the man who was killed told us that his father, brothers, and two cousins received a message abut an hour after they learned he had been killed that their crossing permits were no longer valid. Instead of compensating them for the injustice that had been done (Did he have to be killed immediately?) they have now been denied the right to go to work and earn a living for their families. They don’t know who is responsible for cancelling their permits – the police or the general security forces. They were unable to find out.
At 15:00 before our shift began at A’anin checkpoint we drove up the hill to the “Barakim” army outpost with its tall antennas and looked out over the north West Bank. It was a hot dusty day and we looked out at the separation wall that extends the length of the fence from Um al Fahem.
15:30 A’anin Checkpoint
About 100 workers were already waiting. A tractor with a loaded wagon was parked directly opposite the gate. Someone complained that the checkpoint only opens twice a week, and on the other days it takes him two hours to drive to his field that is located on the other side of the checkpoint in the seamline zone. Suddenly an army vehicle arrived and soldiers told the people excitedly that they have to move away from the gate because there is activity going on. The tractor was allowed to drive through. At 15:40 they began to let the people cross in groups of five and then in groups of four. A woman soldier ordered the people to move back and shamelessly pushed the people back from the gate.
Meanwhile we spoke with Mahmoud who sadly showed us pictures of his son, an officer in the Palestinian police who was killed in a fight with drug dealers. The checkpoint was manned by soldiers from the artillery corps. We spoke with their pleasant platoon commander. He explained that regulations had been changed and that the soldiers guarding the fence day and night at the checkpoint are responsible for opening it, but they are not allowed to open the checkpoint for anyone returning from work early. They have to bring reinforcements in order to open the gate.
16:15 – Tura – Shaked Checkpoint
There were also new regulations here. Drivers were no longer permitted to wait next to the gate with the stoplight inside the checkpoint. Instead, the waited impatiently a few meters in front of the main gate. Two soldiers from the border patrol approached us and warned us not to get close to the checkpoint. Four cars were waiting to enter and one of the soldiers would signal them to enter. Luckily, there is also a stoplight…
16:45 – Barta’a – Reihan Checkpoint
We were pleased to meet our friend B. from A’arka. He has been working in the Shahak Industrial Zone for many years directly opposite his home on the other side of the separation barrier. He is, as usual, smiling despite the fact that he is no longer entitled to work extra hours and is no longer compensated for missed work days that were his fault. His standard of living is now lower, but he is pleased to be able to earn a living. We also spoke to him about the man who had been killed at the Tura Checkpoint. Many workers continued to arrive and walk down the long sleeve on their way to their homes in the West Bank.