Palestinians await permission to enter Egypt as they gather inside the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and southern Gaza Strip on December 21, 2014
Palestinians await permission to enter Egypt as they gather inside the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and southern Gaza Strip on December 21, 2014 © Said Khatib - AFP/File
Palestinians await permission to enter Egypt as they gather inside the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and southern Gaza Strip on December 21, 2014
AFP
Last updated: December 24, 2014

Egypt keeps Rafah crossing open for a third day

Egypt kept its Rafah border crossing with Gaza open for a third day on Tuesday, state media said, after nearly 2,000 people used the terminal in the first two days.

The Rafah crossing, the only access point to the Gaza Strip not controlled by Israel, opened on Sunday for only the second time in two months to allow people stranded in Egypt to enter the Palestinian enclave.

State news agency MENA said that 1,950 people had used the crossing since it was opened.

It said that 1,137 people came from Gaza and 813 went to the territory from Egypt on Sunday and Monday.

The United Nations said last month that more than 3,500 Palestinians had been stranded in Egypt since the crossing was closed following a suicide attack in North Sinai on October 24 that killed 30 soldiers.

Many Palestinians who travel through Rafah are students heading to universities in Egypt or beyond, or people in need of medical treatment.

During the first six months of the year, when the crossing was closed for a total of 22 days, an average of 6,400 people crossed each month, the UN said.

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