Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Sun 18.10.09, Morning

Sylvia P., Ofra B., Chana A. (reporting)

7:00 AM, Bethlehem - Checkpoint 300: people waiting for their transportation into town are dismayed at the time it took today to cross. Inside the terminal we meet one of the EAPPI people who told us that the humanitarian line wasn't opened until 6:40 and there was a lot of pushing and shouting and attempts at jumping over the fence before. People who crossed over later had less of a problem. Four windows were open when we got there and appr. Twothousand people had crossed by 7:00 AM. One of the windows was then closed.

7:50 AM: the exit hall was again crowded with people and the window that was closed was reopened. This was the last batch. Two people were held back and we tried to find out why. Both of them had valid permits. After agonizing phone calls, it transpired that one of them was now blacklisted and the other had to go refresh his handprint.

8:15 AM, Etzion DCL: not many cars outside and not too many people inside. The line went OK. There was a "mixed" couple, the wife from Silwan and the husband from Hussan, married for five years with two children. The husband was blacklisted, they had never applied for family unification and his permits are for a week at a time to see his family. We referred them to HaMoked and to the lawyers we are connected to.

Two people who had been called to the GSS at 9:00 AM were actually allowed to enter at 9:30.

There is a printed announcement on the door saying that the DCL will be closed on October 19 and 20 except for humanitarian cases.