Egypt takes concrete decisions towards ending Gaza siege

29 Jul

Crossing hours, traveler numbers and energy hookups among decisions taken

Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi (right) meets Gaza premiet Ismail Haniya in Cairo. Their decisions will start to lift the siege on Gaza.

 

by Ma’an News Agency in Gaza City

28 July 2012

Egypt will follow a new policy on the Rafah crossing between it and the Gaza Strip, and the people of Gaza will experience changes in travel procedures and times, says Ismail Haniya, prime minister of the Hamas-run government in the Gaza Strip.

Speaking to the Gaza-based Hamas-affiliated Palestine newspaper following a meeting with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, Haniya said the crossing would operate 12 hours a day, from 9am to 9pm.

Further, the number of travelers leaving the enclave will rise to 1,500 a day, and all arrivals from abroad will be let in.

“60 percent of the Gazan citizens blacklisted by Egypt and denied entry have been removed from the list,” Haniya added.

In addition, he said, an agreement has been reached that any Palestinian citizen who arrives in Egypt from other countries will be granted a 72-hour visa, so as to make travel arrangements and avoid been deported.

The electricity crisis was also discussed, he said.

“Three major steps will be carried out to solve the power crisis starting with an increase in the amount of fuel to Gaza’s power plant in tandem with amplifying the power grid from Egypt to Gaza from 22 to 30 megawatts. After that, a gas pipeline will be built to provide Egyptian natural gas to the sole power plant in the coastal enclave. Then, the Gaza Strip will be connected to the joint Arab grid known as the 8th grid.”

Haniya and Morsi discussed reopening the Egyptian consulate in Gaza City which had been shut down since the Israeli military offensive on Gaza, according to Haniya.

He hinted that he discussed with Morsi the issue of smuggling tunnels under the borders with Egypt.

“The tunnels were a temporary phenomenon created when the Palestinians lost all elements of life. They used them to fulfill their needs, and it is their natural right, but if the siege on Gaza is ended, these tunnels will be needless.”

One Response to “Egypt takes concrete decisions towards ending Gaza siege”

  1. Murray Rowlands July 29, 2012 at 1:23 pm #

    Awesome news..the zionist terror regimes grip will lessen as a result of this and the Palestinians can be given the rights they have been denied for so long. This blockade was always unjust, unfair and perpetrated by zionism in america and england, while giving support to an illegal occupier.

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