• Saturday, Jan 23, 2021
  • Last Update : 02:33 pm

Hamas takes control of Gaza goods crossing with Israel

  • Published at 09:51 pm February 18th, 2019
Palestinian demonstrators
Palestinian demonstrators gather at the Israel-Gaza border fence during a protest, east of Gaza City February 15, 2019 Reuters

Hamas seized the Gaza Strip in 2007 in a near civil war with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas' Fatah party

Gaza's Islamist rulers Hamas took control of the Palestinian side of the enclave's main goods crossing with Israel, the strip's interior ministry and an official news agency said Sunday.

Hamas seized the Gaza Strip in 2007 in a near civil war with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas' Fatah party.

But it agreed to hand control of the crossings to the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority in 2017, as part of a since-failed reconciliation attempt between the two parties.

The PA administration at the goods crossing said Sunday that Hamas had "expelled (its) employees and banned them from entering the crossing", the official news agency Wafa reported.

Known to Israelis as Kerem Shalom and to Palestinians as the Kerem Abu Salem, the crossing in the south of poverty-hit enclave has been a lifeline for Gazans, who have lived under a crippling Israeli blockade for more than a decade.

Hamas confirmed PA employees had left the crossing.

Security forces "put in place procedures dictated by security imperatives," Gaza's interior ministry spokesman Iyad al-Bozum said in a statement.

"Palestinian Authority employees at the crossing have refused to cooperate on these procedures for a few days and today we were surprised by their departure," he added.

He said goods continued to pass through the crossing as normal.

The Israeli defence ministry body responsible for Palestinian civil affairs, COGAT, said "trucks were going through" into Gaza as usual.

Last month, Gaza's only crossing with Egypt was partially closed for some 20 days after PA employees withdrew from the border point, accusing Hamas of interference.

Hamas employees quickly retook control of the Rafah crossing, the only way for Palestinians to leave the enclave that bypasses Israel.

Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza, including Hamas, have fought three wars since 2008.

Tensions have risen again since March as Palestinians have gathered at least weekly along the border with Israel for often-violent protests, calling for an end to the blockade.

At least 250 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire since then, the majority shot during clashes, though others have been hit by tank fire or air strikes.

Two Israeli soldiers have been killed over the same period.

Facebook 50
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail