World Bulletin/News Desk
Egypt will reopen the Rafah crossing with the Gaza Strip on both directions from Sunday through Wednesday to allow pilgrims and humanitarian cases to cross, the Palestinian embassy in Cairo said Saturday.
"Sunday and Monday will be dedicated for the travel of pilgrims, while humanitarian cases will be allowed to cross on Tuesday and Wednesday," Palestinian Ambassador in Cairo Barakat al-Fara said in statements posted on the embassy's website.
The Palestinian diplomat thanked Egypt's intelligence for what he described as its "continual" support and striving to alleviate the suffering of the Palestinian people.
Earlier in the day, the head of Gaza's crossing and border authority Maher Abu Sabha said that Egypt would exceptionally reopen the Rafah crossing with the Gaza Strip on Sunday for two days to allow Palestinian pilgrims to cross.
Abu Sabha added that the Egyptian government had told his authority that it would reopen the crossing on Sunday to allow 800 Palestinian pilgrims to cross on route to the holy sites in Saudi Arabia and also to allow returning pilgrims to get into Gaza.
He added, however, that patients and humanitarian cases would not be allowed to cross the terminal on Sunday and Monday.
Around 15,000 Palestinian patients have applied to leave Gaza through the border crossing with Egypt so far, Abu Sabha said.
Egypt has tightened its grip on the border with Gaza since last July's ouster of Mohamed Morsi – the country's first freely elected president – by the army.
Egyptian authorities accuse Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, of interfering in Egypt's domestic affairs and carrying out attacks inside the country, charges that Hamas has repeatedly denied.
Last Mod: 14 Haziran 2014, 16:08