Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Tue 23.3.10, Afternoon
15:00 PM, Etzion DCL: as we arrived, a group of 10 people from Bethlehem, including 2 priests, were coming out. According to them, after waiting for 2 hours, they were told that the computers were down and so they could not renew their magnetic cards.
Inside, a young man was waiting at the carousel, also to renew his magnetic card, but there was no soldier at the window. We made a phone call and, soon afterwards, a pleasant woman soldier came to the window (whether as a result of our call or as coincidence). But she confirmed that the computers were down and that they were waiting for a technician. As this was likely to take a few hours, there was no point in waiting and the young man decided to return next morning.
16:00 PM, Bethlehem – Checkpoint 300: a steady stream passed through till about five stations were functioning, apart from a short time while there was a change of personnel, and things went smoothly. Even the private guards took no notice of us.
Two women approached us and complained about the late opening of the checkpoint in the morning. They need to come into Jerusalem at 5 a.m. and the checkpoint opens only at 6 (or 6.30?). They also complained that men come into the women’s queue.