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Photo: Barel Efraim
Kerem Shalom crossing between Israel and Gaza
Photo: Barel Efraim
Israel reopens Gaza crossings as calm restored
Closure lifted at both Erez and Kerem Shalom crossings, six days after end of flare-up that saw rockets fired from Hamas-run enclave claim the lives of four Israeli civilians
Israel reopened Sunday its crossings with the blockaded Gaza Strip after closing them during a deadly escalation earlier this month, an official said, as a fragile truce held.

 

 

Both the Erez Crossing for people and Kerem Shalom crossing for goods were open and operating, a spokeswoman for COGAT, the Defense Ministry unit that oversees the crossings, said in a statement.

 

File photo: Trucks passing through Kerem Shalom between Israel and Gaza (Photo: Barel Efraim) (Photo: Barel Efraim)
File photo: Trucks passing through Kerem Shalom between Israel and Gaza (Photo: Barel Efraim)
 

 

Both had been closed on May 4, when Gaza rulers Hamas and its ally Islamic Jihad fired hundreds of rockets at Israel, with the army striking dozens of targets in Gaza in response.

 


Erez Crossing between Israel and Gaza (Photo: Roee Idan) (Photo: Roee Idan)
Erez Crossing between Israel and Gaza (Photo: Roee Idan)

 

Four Israeli civilians and 25 Palestinians, including at least nine militants, were killed in the two-day flare-up, which ended last Monday in a tentative truce.

 

 L-R: Rocket victims Moshe Feder, Pinchas Menachem Prezuazman, Ziad Alhamamda and Moshe Agadi
L-R: Rocket victims Moshe Feder, Pinchas Menachem Prezuazman, Ziad Alhamamda and Moshe Agadi

 

Palestinian officials said Israel had agreed to ease its crippling decade-long blockade of the impoverished enclave in exchange for calm.

 

IDF tanks on the Gaza border (Photo: Reuters) (Photo: Reuters)
IDF tanks on the Gaza border (Photo: Reuters) (Photo: Reuters)

 

Israel did not publicly confirm the deal, but on Friday lifted the ban it had imposed on Palestinian fishing boats operating off Gaza.

Rockets fired from Gaza at Israel (Photo: Reuters) (Photo: Reuters)
Rockets fired from Gaza at Israel (Photo: Reuters) (Photo: Reuters)
 

Israel says its blockade is necessary to isolate Gaza's Islamist rulers Hamas, with whom it has fought three wars since 2008.

 


 IDF strike in Gaza (Photo: AFP)
IDF strike in Gaza (Photo: AFP)

 

Egypt has a similar blockade on its border with Gaza.

 

But critics say it amounts to collective punishment of Gaza's two million residents.

 


פרסום ראשון: 05.12.19, 10:28
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