Published On: Fri, Nov 14th, 2014

Palestinians Stuck at Border Crossing for 3 Weeks and It’s Not Israel’s Fault

Rafah crossingA group of Palestinians stuck on the Egyptian side of the Rafah crossing into Gaza on Thursday called on Egypt to open the crossing after three weeks of closure in order to allow them to return to the Gaza Strip, Ma’an reported.

“We have been stuck in Egypt for 20 days, but no one has helped us or even talks about us, ” Talal Salim, one of those stuck at the crossing, told Ma’an.

The group are victims of the Egyptian government’s policies regarding the crossing, which may be sealed for weeks at a time with little notice.

The most recent closure came after a bomb hit Egyptian soldiers in el-Arish, 31 miles 31 miles west of the Gaza border. The Egyptians didn’t seem to care that there was no clear relationship between the incident and anyone living inside Gaza.

Hamas Deputy Minister of the Interior Kamel Abu Madi called on Egyptian authorities to open the Rafah crossing permanently, arguing that “there is no excuse for its closure.”

Abu Madi said that the crossing had been closed for a long time and those stuck on the wrong side of it needed to return to their homes and families. He also said that there were many Palestinians in the Gaza Strip unable to travel to Egypt.

It’s funny how there are consequences to things people say and do. Like when you encourage shooting other people, those other people tend to retaliate. So last century…

A Palestinian named Talal Salim told Ma’an that he had left the Gaza Strip for medical treatment and now needed to return to Gaza.

“We are out of money, and the Egyptian side’s situation is not good, ” he said.

The Rafah crossing has been the principal connection between Gaza’s 1.8 million residents and the outside world since the imposition of a blockade by Israel beginning in 2007.

Israel imposed the blockade following attempts to smuggle ilegal weapons and ammunition into Gaza, to facilitate the shooting of Israeli civilians.

Consequences again. Palestinians in general seem to have a difficulty accepting this concept. Ma’an complains the blockade has severely limited the imports and exports of the Gaza Strip and has led to frequent humanitarian crises and hardship for Gazans.

That’s absolutely true. The only part Ma’an fails to mention is where Gazans shoot at civilians and how that starts the whole blockade thing.

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