Cairo/Washington, Oct 15 (EFE).- US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said that the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip will reopen to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to Palestinians trapped in the enclave.
A handout photo made available by Israel’s Government Press Office (GPO) shows Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken holding a joint press conference after a meeting at the Kirya, which houses the Israeli Ministry of Defense, in Tel Aviv, Israel, 12 October 2023. EFE/EPA/GPO/CHAIM CHAIM HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES
“Rafah will be reopened,” Blinken told reporters accompanying him after meeting in Cairo with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
“We’re putting in place with the United Nations, with Egypt, with Israel, with others, a mechanism by which to get the assistance in and to get it to people who need it,” Blinken said, according to a transcript later released by the State Department.
Hours later, the American network NBC, citing a Palestinian official, reported that the Rafah crossing will open Monday at 9 am local time, allowing the entry of humanitarian aid.
EFE asked the White House, the State Department and the Pentagon, but was not given confirmation.
The US reached an agreement with Egypt, Israel and Qatar so that on Saturday, hundreds of foreigners and Palestinians dual nationals would be allowed to leave the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing.
However, after the agreement was leaked, the Egyptian authorities announced that they would not allow foreigners in Gaza to enter unless aid was first given to the 2.2 million people in the Strip.
Humanitarian aid, including medicine for hospitals in Gaza, is now waiting to cross from Egypt through Rafah, the only exit from the enclave not controlled by Israel and that connects with the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula.
As the US, Canada and other countries attempt to evacuate their citizens from the Gaza Strip, the Israeli military appears to be preparing for a ground invasion.
Israeli soldiers have been gathering on the border with the Strip and the government has asked the 1.1 million Palestinians who live in the north of the enclave to move to the south, an ultimatum that has been strongly condemned by the Arab community and the UN, since, among other things, no one is able to leave the blockaded Strip. EFE