Union of Gaza Municipalities: ‘We Implore Egypt’ to Open Rafah Crossing

A humanitarian convoy headed to Gaza. (Photo: via UN Twitter Page)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The Union of Gaza Municipalities wrote a letter to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi on Sunday, calling for the immediate opening of the Rafah Crossing amid the humanitarian catastrophe caused by the Israeli war on Gaza.

“The lives of 2.3 million individuals, including a staggering number of vulnerable children, hang in the balance, facing constant and severe peril,” the letter reads, adding:

“We implore Egypt, our valued sister country, to recognize the pivotal significance of this moment and make a historic decision to swiftly open the Rafah Crossing.”

“This action is crucial to meet the critical needs of the Palestinian people in Gaza, safeguarding lives and providing essential aid without delay,” the letter concluded.

Since Israel imposed a “complete siege” on Gaza on October 9, the Rafah crossing is the only exit that may allow the transit of food, water, and humanitarian aid, as well as the transfer of patients who need to receive medical treatment abroad.

Egyptian media said that the crossing was initially shut down following three Israeli airstrikes on October 9 and 10. 

The crossing opened on October 21 to allow a limited number of trucks to carry aid into Gaza from Egypt.

However, Egypt seems reluctant to open the border for longer periods of time. The BBC cited UN’s humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths as saying that “the Egyptian authorities fear a great influx of Gazans – for whom they would then be responsible, for an indefinite period.”

Israel has, thus far, killed over 8,000 Palestinians in Gaza, and wounded more than 20,000. Palestinian Ministry of Health reports and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

On Friday night, Israel intensified airstrikes and expanded its ground operations in Gaza, while knocking out all communications for Palestinians in the besieged Strip.

Gaza has been under a tight Israeli-Egyptian military siege since 2007, following a democratic election in occupied Palestine, the results of which were rejected by Tel Aviv and Washington. 

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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