Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Tue 4.1.11, Afternoon

Yael L.-J. (reporting). Avital F. (driving)

14.00 till 16.30 PM

Personnel remark:  this report got written on the 6th of January. Before I could send it to you it disappeared in the depth of my computer. I did not find it. So I had to write it again. Meanwhile the report about the shift at 11th of January was due. I sent it in. That is the reason why I am late with this report. I am sorry.

Etzion DCL: we reached Etzion DCL via the tunnel road at 14.50 PM. A lot of cars on the parking lot  indicated that many  Palestinians must be waiting somewhere for soldiers or for the Shabak.

Inside the waiting hall 19 mostly young -men stood together on the stairs before the turnstile, leading to the soldiers on duty. But no soldier was visible.

Some of the Palestinians told us that they had been waiting for hours, either for permissions or for Shabak.

We had just done a phone call, when at 15.15 PM all of a sudden the turnstile opened, and the whole group was let in. Those left behind were family members or companions.

Some told us about their problems.

One was a middle aged man, accompanying his 60 years old father, a medical doctor who owns his own clinic, who was invited to the Shabak. This was already his second appointment  The son was angry: " what can he tell them, something about his patients? He has no criminal record. Only as a 14 year old boy he was in prison. They are wasting our time...."

Another one came on behalf of his sick mother to get a permit for her to go to Mukassah hospital on mount of Olives in East Jerusalem. She had filled out the prescribed form and attached a fax from the Mukassah hospital doctor. The son did not know that instead of this she needed a handwritten letter from her family MD in the West-bank, to recommend that she gets herself enlisted to the Mukassah hospital.

We explained this to the son.

Bethlehem– Checkpoint 300: we arrived at 15.50 PM. By this time there was almost nobody in the cold hall with the counters. One female soldier sat at counter 1 and let everybody on their way to Bethlehem pass without any checking. After 16.00 PM more Palestinians gathered at the CP. A civil guard  arrived  to help open the door.

Also tourists were coming from Bethlehem, evidently surprised that at this part of the checkpoint nobody wanted to see their passports.

There were also some Muslim women with children, passing through the checkpoint to Jerusalem.

They had to show their permits.