Located adjacent to the Separation Wall ("Jerusalem Wrap") at the north entrance to Bethlehem, this checkpoint cuts off Bethlehem and the entire West Bank from East Jerusalem, with all the serious implications for health services, trade, education, work and the fabric of life. The checkpoint is manned by the Border police and private security companies. It is an extensive infrastructure barrier and is designated as a border terminal, open 24 hours a day for foreign tourists. Israeli passport holders are not allowed to pass to Bethlehem, and Palestinian residents are not allowed to enter Jerusalem, except those with entry permits to Israel and East Jerusalem residents. Israeli buses are allowed to travel to Bethlehem only through this checkpoint.
The checkpoint, which demonstrated harsh conditions of crowding and extreme passage delays for years, started employing advanced electronic identification posts and has upgraded its gates' system as of the middle of 2019 - and conditions improved.
Adjacent to the checkpoint, in an enclosure between high walls and another passage, is the historic Rachel's Tomb, which is now embedded within a concrete fortified building. It contains prayer and study complexes for Jews only, as well as a residential complex.
updated November 2019