Today’s journey went to the encircled city of Qalqilya on the occupied West Bank. Qalqilya is situated close to the Israeli border, and is completely surrounded by the Apartheid wall.
Getting in and out of Qalqilya can be a real hassle, you have to pass 2 permanent Israelli checkpoints, and there are often “flying-checkpoints” on the main roads. Causing long ques of cars and people. Today we where kind of lucky… on the way in to Qalqilya we where not stopped at any of the two checkpoints, and the journey took about 3.5 hour. Going by Sherut to Ramallah, and public bus and a private car!!! to Qalqilya.
Since today is Friday, all Muslim cities are very quiet… most of the shops are closed and the people are going to the Mosque for Friday praiers. Nevertheless we found both something to eat (delicious Hommous and Shis Kebab.. REALLY!!!) and The Apartheid Wall (The last of the two being the easiest to find.. )
On both to the North and the South side of Qalqilya, there are large Israeli settlements overlooking the enclosed city, and this is of course the official reason why there is an need for a wall… To walk along the the inside of the wall, and realize that the city is actually totally surrounded, is so bizarre it is hard to explain… This is nothing but a big outdoor prison… The Israelis controlling both who can enter the city and who can leave it…
It was a little surprising to find NORWEGIAN graffiti on the wall in Qalqilya, but it seems someone from the political party SV (Sosialistisk Venstreparti) have been here before us, and tagged the wall! Way to GO!!!
On the bus heading towards Qalqilya, we meet some guys who where very interested in where we were from, and what the hell we wanted to to in Qalqilya. After the usual 10 minutes of trying to explain, they were satisfied with us and welcomed us to Palestine (As they always do ) Then they showed us some videos on their mobile phones… Videos of what they do with spies (or collaborators) that are found guilty of working with the Israelis….
(Modern: (og alle andre mødre) Dere trenger ikke se på disse klippene… de er ganske drøye)
We also got the hold of some more from Al-Manar TV… this one also from the guys at the bus (who BTW claimed to be cops…)
These videos where handed us via Bluetooth from one mobile phone to another at a bus from Ramallah to Qalqilya in the occupied West Bank… Technology will never stop to amaze me…. 😉