Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Mon 14.9.09, Afternoon

Shlomit S. and Ora A. (reporting)
Seriously? Does this make us safer?


13:30 PM,  Etzion DCL:  the waiting hall was all but empty when we arrived. A young man was sitting bent-backed in the first row. He told us he came at 10:00 for a meeting with the GSS. He handed over his ID card when he arrived and nobody so much as looked his way since. We asked the soldier on duty to remind the GSS that someone is waiting for them. His first response was that he has no number for the GSS, nonetheless, shortly after the young man was summoned in. A long while ago we wrote a letter to complain of this habit of the GSS to summon people, take their documents and let them wait sometime till close on the DCL closing time. At other times, after a whole day spent in waiting their documents are returned and they're sent home. It looks like the letter has not made a difference.

Another man told us he'd been working in Israel for thirty years when suddenly, last Thursday, his permit was taken from him at the Checkpoint. He asked for a meeting with the GSS to try to find out why his entry into Israel is prohibited all of a sudden but failed to get it. We called the Humanitarian Centre and they promised to give him an answer. We also referred him to Sylvia. A man who asked for a permit to visit his wife in Jerusalem at the Palestinian DCL in Beth-Lehem was sent to the Etzion DCL only to be sent back to Bethlehem for a certain form. He had to take a return journey by taxi to Bethlehem and back to Etzion. We don't know if he got his permit.
Later the waiting room did fill up and at 15:30 everybody gained entrance. However, nobody came out again for ages. In reply to our inquiry we were told the computer system is faulty. We got the same explanation a week ago, a fortnight ago and three weeks ago.