Chana Stein (translating), Ronit Dahan-Ramati (reporting)

05.15. we arrived, parking on the Israeli side. On the Palestinian side, the queues were relatively short, mostly not extending beyond the shed, if at all. When the turnstiles were opened, may people entered at once. 5 checking stations were open, During our watch, the lines occasionally extended a bit beyond the shed.  The kiosk was open, and the beigelseller was present.

We met 2 ecumenical volunteers inside, on the Israeli side was another.  At one point a woman arrived: she was from Gaza and, if we understood correctly, she need to reach a hospital in East Jerusalem to accompany a patient.  There was a problem about her permit, but she nevertheless was trying to pass. After a ffew minutes she returned with tears in her eyes, as she was refused entry. We advised her to wait until 6 o’clock in the hope that the D.C.O. officer would be able to help her.

Shortly after 6, an officer and soldier of the D.C.O. arrived and immediately went to the Humanitarian Gate where there were already a number of people waiting.  They were soon joined by a policeman, later also by a policewoman and guards.  The Gazan woman approached the D.C.O. officer who spoke to her long and patiently; he also telephoned, apparently to try to help her.  But in the end he couldn’t solve the problem and she was forced to wait until the D.C.O. office would open at 8.30.

By 6.30 the lines were very short, contained within the shed. We joined one at 6.35 and after about 20 minutes were outside.