Bethlehem (300), Etzion DCL
6:30 - Outside as usual, there are many people. Our acquaintance sits already in his usual place. He and his friends say that today was a “10 day”. The passage was quick and without delays. May it always be that way. We say good bye and wish each other a good week.
Inside four windows are open, and the hall is quite empty, a rare sight at this hour. After a few minutes it emptied completely. S. the Ecumenical says as well that today was a good day, and that it was calm on the other side, too. It seems as if the construction work there has ended. About 4,000 people had passed. It's a little less than usual, but it seems that the change for the better was because the checkpoint operated well. Most of the time it was possible to pass continuously and the carousels were not halted. The routine of occupation.
However, S. reports that L., her colleague, who was here earlier and now passed to the Palestinian side, was physically expelled from the hall by a security guard. The guard also ordered the soldiers to stop the passage of the workers, because L. insisted on his right to stay in the hall. Later L. arrived too and told us about the event: the security guard ordered him to go outside. He insisted on his right to stay, since he stands aside and does not interfere. The security guard refused and ordered the soldiers to stop passing people. The soldiers themselves did not know what to do. At the farthest window they continued to pass people. After L. signaled to people that they can go to this window, the guard lost his temper and threw him out. L. reported that this was the fourth time that this same security guard throws him out using physical force.
Meanwhile, the passage continues smoothly. Occasionally there were more people, but at no point was there any pressure or need to open the gate. Some people who had their permit for 7 had to wait till 7, but otherwise everything was calm and people told us that today was a good day. Among the passers was Y. the child with the kidney transplant and his mother. We greet them and enjoy seeing that Y. grew taller and looks great.
7:30 – completely empty. 3 cleaners in orange shirts arrived and started to clean the room and the windows. We left. On our way out we saw a municipal cleaner with a broom and a sweeping machine cleaning the street. Good to see they clean even after the Pope left...
Et DCO today, too, the loud loudspeakers yelled a recorded explanation of the magnetic card issuance process that repeats itself all the time. The explanation repeats what is written in text on the screen. The intention seems good, to help those who cannot read, but in practice this is mostly a nightmare ... and interferes with hearing whose name is called on the loudspeakers.
We wrote a number of applications for prevention removal and explained to others what documents are required. We left towards 10.