09.07.2011 07.Tammus, 5771 Balak
Twilight Zone / Crippling bureaucracy
Three Palestinians seriously injured by work accidents in Israel have traveled here for years to receive treatment, but now they're facing a series of insurmountable obstacles.
Mohamed Awada, a disabled and sick 52-year-old man on crutches, applied to the Civil Administration to gain access to Israel for the ongoing medical treatment he requires following a work accident in Israel. This is what Second Lt. Ben Kahila, the deputy commander of the Tarqumiya branch of the Israeli Civil Administration in the West Bank, wrote on his form: "Your request is rejected. Reason for the rejection: No application was received in order to receive the permit under the terms of a security firm."
These monstrous words were accompanied by an oral explanation: Awada has to hire a private security man, at a cost of $200 an hour, to escort him – from the moment he enters Israel until he leaves – every time he needs medical treatment. Awada, who is in need of frequent treatment, cannot afford the luxury of a security guard. In the past month, since being informed of this requirement, he has missed all his appointments for treatment. As a result, his pains have intensified and his suffering increased….