Israeli authorities detained a Palestinian man, who was escorting his ill wife, while at the Beit Hanoun crossing (Erez) in the northern besieged Gaza Strip.
The Jenin Media Center said that Karam Mustafa Muhammad Tantawi, 51, from Khan Younis, was escorting his ill wife, Safaa Abed al-Majid Tantawi, 47, back to the Gaza Strip after she had received medication for cancer in Jerusalem City.
— Al Mezan Center (@AlMezanCenter) April 25, 2019
The center reported that the couple left the Gaza Strip to Jerusalem City for treatment on April 1, however, on their way back after 20 days of receiving treatment and while at the Beit Hanoun crossing, the Israeli authorities held her husband for 15 minutes before they ordered her to head back to the Gaza Strip without her husband.
Tantawi refused to leave without her husband and waited for him at the crossing and was then informed by the Palestinian Civil Liaison that her husband was detained.
PCHR strongly condemns that the Israeli authorities stationed at Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing arrested a patient’s companion, from the Gaza Strip, while returning to the Gaza Strip.https://t.co/X2YjWo7UTr pic.twitter.com/giCCKWWqEt
— Islamic Voice (@islamicvoicemy) April 25, 2019
Erez is the only land crossing between Gaza and Israel, although travel is heavily restricted by Israeli authorities as part of a crippling blockade on the coastal enclave in place since 2007.
Palestinians detained at Erez are often interrogated for several hours, sometimes for days, before they are either allowed into Israel en route to the West Bank or sent back to Gaza.
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51 yr old detained at Beit Hanoun/Erez crossing, returning from West Bank with wife who had been receiving cancer treatment
aj-Jib, nw Jerusalem, 1 detained, ‘after attack’
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— SFoP (@SFoP_Palestine) April 24, 2019
The Gaza Strip has suffered under an Israeli military blockade since 2007 when Hamas was elected to rule the territory. Residents of Gaza suffer from high unemployment and poverty rates, as well as the consequences of three devastating wars with Israel since 2008.
(Ma’an, PC, Social Media)