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Sunduz, 11, is a Palestinian girl who lives near Bethlehem. Bethlehem is in the West Bank, which is part of the Occupied Palestinian Territories - lands which have been under the military rule of neighbouring Israel since 1967. 

SunduzSunduz's family live between the town of Bethlehem and a new settlement where Israeli people have moved in. The Israeli army have built a huge concrete wall near Sunduz’s house, cutting it off from Bethlehem.

‘I hate the noise from the building and all the bulldozers. It echoes all over the valley,’ she says.

Over an hour to get to school

Sunduz's school is only 2km away but because of the wall it now takes her over an hour to get there.

'I used to go to school by walking through the fields,' she explains. 'Now I have to pass through the checkpoint which takes a lot longer. I can't visit my friends either because we can only get through the checkpoint at certain times.'

'After the wall was built, life changed'

Sunduz's grandmother Fatma says 'Often we can't get through the checkpoint. They tell us our produce is not fresh or good quality but that's because they want to stop people buying the things we make and grow. Two weeks ago I bought some bread in Bethlehem and they wouldn't let me take it through the checkpoint.'

'After the wall was built, life changed,' adds Fatma. 'It now costs 100 shekels for a taxi to get to Bethlehem. It didn’t cost anything before as we could use our own transport. Everything you want to own, buy, or make is controlled.'

Help for the family

A Christian Aid partner called the Association for Citizen Rights in Israel (ACRI) have been able to help the family by getting permits for Sunduz's dad to travel into Bethlehem to work.  ACRI is also appealing to the Israeli Supreme Court on behalf of families like Sunduz’s to change the route of the wall so that Palestinians in the West Bank have access to Bethlehem.