Home News Egypt’s president agrees to reopen Gaza aid crossing after Biden call

Egypt’s president agrees to reopen Gaza aid crossing after Biden call

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Egypt has agreed to allow fuel and humanitarian aid to be shipped from its territory to Gaza through Israel, the White House and Egypt’s presidency announced Friday, reopening a vital channel for delivering aid to the hard-hit Palestinian region.

The agreement was reached during a phone call between President Biden and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on Friday, CNN reported. White House readout of callThe statement said fuel and humanitarian aid would be able to enter Gaza through the Israeli-operated Kerem Shalom crossing, which is located at the border between Egypt, Gaza and Israel.

For months, Kerem Shalom was one of two main land crossings into the Gaza Strip, through which much-needed food, medicine and fuel could enter the Strip. The other crossing, between Egypt and Gaza’s southernmost city of Rafah, was also the main route for Gaza’s sick and wounded to flee the war.

The border crossing was closed in early May after Israeli forces seized the Rafah crossing as part of a long-term plan to advance toward the city. Although Israel has also opened crossings to northern Gaza, the closure of the Rafah crossing has limited the amount of international aid that can enter the region. Israel and Egypt have blamed each other for the seizure.

In the weeks before Israel seized the Rafah crossing, widespread hunger in parts of Gaza had begun to ease as aid surged, according to Gaza residents. But after the attack, more than 800,000 people fled Rafah, making it more difficult to get aid into Gaza — and from there to those in need.

The Egyptian government initially refused to send aid trucks to Kerem Shalom after the Rafah crossing was closed, a move that U.S. and Israeli officials said was intended to pressure Israel to abandon its operations in Rafah.

Sisi’s office said the decision was a “temporary measure” until “new legal measures to resume operations at the Rafah crossing” are in place. In a statement released by the White House, President Biden said he is committed to reopening the Rafah crossing “under an arrangement acceptable to both Egypt and Israel” and plans to send a senior team to Cairo next week for further negotiations.

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