Gaza crossings briefly opened after Israeli threatening remarks

Israel has temporarily opened three Gaza crossings for the first time in 10 days a day after Israeli officials issued threatening statements or pay a heavy price.

Gaza crossings briefly opened after Israeli threatening remarks

Israel has temporarily opened three crossings into Gaza, allowing a limited amount of food and fuel to reach blockaded Gazans for the first time in 10 days a day after Israeli officials issued threatening statements for Gazans or pay a heavy price.

Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak said he ordered the crossings opened, in response to numerous requests from the international community.

Raed Fattouh, coordinator of supplies, said about 90 trucks loaded with grain, humanitarian aid and goods for the private sector were due to come in to Gaza during the day.

The tensions increased that Israeli media said would make raids into Gaza.

A six-month truce expired last week.

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni met on Thursday with President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, which borders Gaza to the west and which brokered the truce in June. Mubarak urged restraint on both sides.

At the same time, Olmert appeared on a widely-watched Arabic television channel.

He said he would not hesitate to use Israel's military might if they did not and that a military confrontation would cause "more bloodshed" in Gaza.

Workers on the Gaza side of the Nahal Oz fuel depot said a delivery had arrived for the main power plant in Gaza, where shortages mean periodic blackouts for many of the 1.5 million residents, about half of whom also rely on food aid.

An Israeli military spokesman said the Erez border crossing, the main passage for people between Israel and Gaza, was again closed.

Olmert said it had "no wish" to re-occupy the coastal strip.

A final decision on an Israeli raids into Gaza will be taken in a meeting of caretaker Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's inner security cabinet Sunday.

"We are bringing in humanitarian aide before we enter with troops into the Gaza Strip," one official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told the Ma'ariv daily Friday.


Agencies

Last Mod: 26 Aralık 2008, 15:36
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