Rafah, 19 Jumadil Awwal 1436/10 March 2015 (MINA) – Thousands of Palestinians stormed the Rafah Crossing when it was opened yesterday morning. The Palestinians were in urgent need to travel either to seek medical attention, for studies, work or other reasons.
After 45 days of its continuous closure, the Egyptian authorities announced that they would reopen the crossing for two days started yesterday. More than 500 pilgrims who had visas to travel to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, in February have no missed out on the opportunity to go as their visas have expired.
Rafah Crossing is the only window for about 1.8 million Gaza residents to the outside world. There are six other crossings between Gaza and Egypt, but because of the eight year Israeli siege on Gaza, the crossings have been almost entirely closed except for the entry of certain goods, Middle East Monitor (MEMO) quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting, Tuesday (10/3).
According to the records of the interior ministry in Gaza, more than 10,000 residents are registered for urgent leave. On Monday, only 361 were allowed through the crossing.
Resident Hussein Fojo, 43, said he waited for many hours in the travel lounge on the Palestinian side, hoping to leave to reunite with his family in Egypt. His attempts were unsuccessful.
“I came to Gaza four months ago for a one-month visit,” he told the Anadolu Agency. “Because of the closure, I am stuck here. I lost my job.”
Sa’diyyeh Abdul-Khaliq, an elderly lady who is in need of treatment for a liver disease, managed to get on the bus to Egypt. She said: “I hoped I could travel. I have been trying for four months. This illness cannot be treated in Gaza so I am forced to head to Egypt.” (T/P002/P3)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)