Egyptian authorities reopened the Rafah crossing with the besieged Gaza Strip for the second day in a row on Thursday, after an 85-day closure.
— Mo | د. محمد المغير (@Mogaza) May 11, 2016
The Gaza crossings committee said that 443 Palestinians were able to enter Egypt on Wednesday, while an untold number of Palestinians stuck abroad were able to re-enter the Gaza Strip. Seven buses and several ambulances were also admitted through the crossing during the day, according to the committee.
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) May 12, 2016
Priority was given to Egyptian passport holders, humanitarian cases, students and Palestinians with foreign residency.
— The IMEU (@theIMEU) May 12, 2016
Egyptian authorities also allowed cement trucks to enter the Palestinian side via the crossing.
The Gaza Ministry of Interior said on Wednesday that the two-day opening was too short a time to process the more than 30,000 passengers registered to cross and waiting for their turn, including humanitarian cases, students who attend schools abroad, patients in need of treatment outside of Gaza, and visa holders who live and work abroad.
Elderly Palestinian cancer patient sleeps on the entrance of the Rafah crossing in Gaza waiting for travel. pic.twitter.com/SsiIB7EvoM
— Abbs Winston (@AbbsWinston) May 11, 2016
Egypt has upheld an Israeli military blockade on the Gaza Strip for the majority of the past three years, since the ouster of President Muhammad Morsi in 2013 and the rise to power of Abd al-Fattah al-Sisi in Egypt.
— MedicAidPalestinians (@MedicalAidPal) May 10, 2016
The nearly nine-year Israeli blockade has plunged the Gaza Strip’s more than 1.8 million Palestinians into poverty. The destruction from three Israeli offensives over the past six years and slow reconstruction due to the blockade led the UN in September to warn that Gaza could be “uninhabitable” by 2020.
Egypt to open Rafah crossing after 85 days of closure https://t.co/beG64ESYLt
— Ben White (@benabyad) May 10, 2016