In Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation, Eyal Weizman writes that “Machsom [checkpoint] Watch – an organisation of women dedicated to monitoring human rights abuses at military checkpoints – has painstakingly recorded and reported the violence and humiliation caused by the checkpoint system; the delaying of the sick, the elderly and infants needing medical care, the births and deaths occurring on the hard shoulder; the manner in which the circulation regime penetrated and violated every aspect of Palestinian daily lives, delaying, humiliating and exhausting people in a daily struggle to survive, attempting, as they claimed, to make Palestinian political resistance beyond their capacity to undertake.”
This photographic essay by Anne Paq is a contribution to the ongoing documentation of this organised humiliation. The photographs were shot for New Frame at Israeli military checkpoints in the West Bank on Fridays during Ramadan from 25 May to 10 June 2018.
Every Friday during this period tens of thousands of Palestinians move through the Bethlehem and Qalandia checkpoints. Some arrive as early at 5am to be sure to make the most of the day.
The usual restrictions imposed by the Israeli forces are eased during Ramadan. All Palestinian women are allowed in but men between 12 years and 40 years old are denied access to Jerusalem. No permission to enter Jerusalem was granted this year for Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip.
Anne Paq is with the ActiveStills photo collective.