Bethlehem, Etzion DCL, Sun 22.2.09, Afternoon

Daniela G., Annette H., Yael R. (reporting)

15:20 - 16:30 PM, Etzion DCL:   when we arrived the parking lot was full of cars, but the waiting area was empty. We asked the soldier how many people were inside, but though very polite, he said he did not know. We waited until 16:30, when the last person left the office. There had been around a dozen inside since we arrived.

A Christian Palestinian from Bet Jalla asked for our help when we arrived. His wife, an Israeli who resides in Haifa, was about to give birth to their child and he was seeking a permit to visit her. On the 15th of this month he had applied for a permit and at !4:36 had been given one only till 22:00 that same day, which would make it very difficult for him to go to Haifa, visit with his wife and be back in time. Today he was told that the officer was not there and that he should go home. We called N., the officer in charge of the DCL, and he explained that the man should have filed a request at the Palestinian DCL, but they would try to help him anyway and he was let in. We assume that he was not helped after all as he left so quickly that we did not even see him coming out again.

16:45 PM, Bethlehem - Checkpoint 300:   the checkpoint was empty when we arrived. We waited until one man passed within a few seconds and we left..