Egypt to Open Rafah Crossing with Gaza for Ramadan (VIDEOS)

Palestinians await permission to enter Egypt at the Rafah Crossing. (Photo: ActiveStills.org)

Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has ordered the opening of the Rafah border crossing with Gaza Strip for the entire holy month of Ramadan, days after mass protests at the Gaza border in which more than 60 Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces.

Sisi made the announcement on Twitter late on Thursday, marking the longest duration since 2013 that the only crossing connecting Gaza to Egypt would be accessible for.

Sisi said:

“I have instructed the concerned agencies to take the necessary steps to keep the Rafah border crossing open throughout the holy month of Ramadan in order to ensure the easing of the burdens on the brothers in the Gaza Strip.”

Ramadan started on May 17 and is expected to end on June 14.

Rafah is the main exit for the 1.9 million Palestinians in the Strip to the outside world since Israel imposed a land, sea and air blockade on the besieged territory more than a decade ago.

But following el-Sisi’s rise to power in 2014, Egypt has kept the crossing largely closed.

The Erez crossing, the other exit for Gazans, is managed by the Israelis, who put severe limitations on the number of people who can pass through it.

Egypt’s decision on Thursday comes amid heightened tensions along the Gaza-Israel border over the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem.

On Monday, at least 60 Palestinian protesters were killed by Israeli forces as they held demonstrations near the Israeli-Gaza fence as part of the Nakba or “Catastrophe” protests.

(AJE, PC, Social Media)

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