Photo: Ma'an News Agency
Photo: Ma’an News Agency

Gaza, 2 Rabiul Awal 1436/24 December 2015 (MINA)- Egyptian authorities kept the Rafah crossing with Gaza open for the third day on Tuesday (23/22), as waiting lists to use the terminal exceed 30,000.

Around 630 Palestinians left Gaza and entered the Egyptian Sinai through the Rafah crossing on Sunday (21/12) after Cairo authorized a temporary reopening of the border.

Over 30,000 Palestinians have registered to use the crossing, which Egypt has only opened twice in two months, Ma’an News Agency quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

Huhair Samir, who is married to a Palestinian-Canadian, says she has been trying to see her husband abroad for nearly a year, but hasn’t been able to leave due to the near-constant closure.

“My daughter wants to immigrate to Canada where her husband has been waiting for her since about a year, but we are paying a toll because of the closure of the crossing. We have paid a lot of money to obtain a visa for her,” her father told Ma’an.

Egyptian citizen Yusriya Abd al-Salam told Ma’an she has been stranded in Gaza since September after she came to check on her home, which was destroyed by Israel during its military offensive.

She lives in Egypt with her husband, who is from Gaza, and children but is unable to return while Rafah remains closed.

Nasr al-Bayid said that he obtained a referral for treatment at the Nasser Institute Cancer Center in October, but he wasn’t able to reach Egypt before it expired.

He says he has been shuttling back and forth between Ministry of Health offices nearly every day to renew it, in case Rafah is suddenly opened.

Thousands of students, medical patients, and foreign passport holders have had their lives put on hold due to the closure of the Rafah crossing by Egypt.

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

The blockade has severely limited the imports and exports of the Gaza Strip and has led to frequent humanitarian crises and hardship for Gazans. (T/P010/R04)

Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)