International

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Egypt Closes Border with Gaza

February 05, 2008 03:21 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Egypt seals the entrance at Rafah, on the Gazan border. An Israeli air strike follows an attack by a Palestinian suicide bomber, the first in about a year.

30-Second Summary

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The Egyptian government says that nationals still in Gaza will be allowed to return, as will Gazans who traveled to Egypt.

The move ends 12 days of unhindered cross-border movement for Palestinians.

Hamas militants pulled down parts of the border fence on Jan. 22 in response to an alleged fuel shortage that Israeli officials insist was exaggerated.

Gaza experienced shortages after Israel sealed all of its borders with the region on Jan. 18.

Israel’s move tightened an economic embargo imposed about six months ago in response to Hamas' continued refusal to recognize the State of Israel. Hamas came to power in the January 2006 election.

The Economist argued this week that Israel and Egypt must allow Gaza’s ruling party to act as a partner in controlling the border, and should learn to judge Hamas based on its deeds “rather than its declaratory words.”

Headline Links: Violence continues after Egypt closes border

Background: The Gaza border

Key Player: Hamas

Analysis: ‘Hamas Won’t Go Away’

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