Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Mon 10.5.10, Afternoon

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

14:00 pm, Etzion DCL: the Shabak usually summons Palestinians for appointments and compels them to wait for many hours in the waiting hall. Upon our arrival we met two young people in the hall: one had arrived on time for his appointment, 9AM, his documents had been taken and he was waiting since. The other was waiting 'merely' for two hours. We made several phone calls trying to speed up the process. The young man waiting since 9AM was finally called in at 15:00.

A number of Palestinians arrived, requesting new or a renewal of permits. The soldier on duty was nowhere to be found and there was no one to attend to their requests. Following two phone calls the soldier would show up, let in those waiting and then disappear. On the other hand, the police representative –Maher, was there all the time, responding to all his applicants, despite the fact that his formal hours were until 12:00.
15:30 pm, Bethlehem – Checkpoint 300: only three inspection tills were functioning. The passage was speedy but then the pace slowed down with the growing number of workmen on their way back from work. We called and requested to increase the number of inspection tills. Another till was started but had operational difficulties and did not function.
An officer arrived, Abu Rukon, who showed much goodwill and suggested that we apply to him with problems that came up.