Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Mon 29.6.09, Afternoon

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Shlomit S., Ora A., Yael S. (reporting)

Etzion DCL: on the face of it, all is as usual....A small notice on the door informs Palestinians that there will be no public reception today except for humanitarian cases and permits. Magnetic cards will be handled only next week. The reason - the officer was at the window, but did not feel well. 

One of the five summoned persons by Shabak (by the army), when his name was called, was also declared to be ill and had gone home. He left without his ID card, to see a doctor, so they said. Another summoned by Shabak after release from prison said that his ID card and magnetic card had not been returnedto him by the prison where he was. Someone came out from the Shabak with bloodshot eyes: we had not seen how he went in – maybe that’s how he is, but he said it was hard. Another entered to get a “clearance” to immigrate to the USA -- also with a problem of a magnetic card taken from him. A phone call to Poli’s assistant brought good results for those waiting as the Shabak began to call their names, to release them or to set another date. One who needed a medical referral from the Peres Centre went in with his request, and was told that he did not have a permit: again a phone call to verify his right to a permit, and he entered and apparently got the permit. Another with a medical request but without ID or documents asked if we could help – but I couldn’t because if there is blacklisting, it takes ten days for non-urgent medical cases. And if the case is urgent, please go to a Palestinian hospital, and if they see need they will refer him to an Israeli hospital. He protests the blacklisting and here we really can do nothing, and didn’t even send him to Sylvia. There was another blacklisted who said that he has been in Sylvia’s care for five years. We asked him about a plea to the High Court. 

We were two hours at the DCL and there were almost no people. Here or there someone arrived to get a permit, which they did receive (no magnetic cards today).The hall was air-conditioned and pleasant, and the Palestinian Authority system was okay. 

We did not get to Bethlehem – Rachel's Crossing.