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Algerian revolutionary Djamila Bouhired to visit Gaza

March 1, 2014 6:33 P.M. (Updated: March 1, 2014 6:34 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Former Algerian revolutionary Djamila Bouhired plans to visit the Gaza Strip on March 8 along with a delegation of 80 women from around the world to celebrate International Women's Day in the besieged coastal enclave.

Undersecretary of the Gaza Strip Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ghazi Hamad told Ma'an on Saturday that Bouhired and the rest of the delegation wanted to celebrate the occasion with women in Gaza.

Their ability to cross into Gaza is dependent on authorities at the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, Hamad added.

Egyptian authorities have kept the crossing closed for extended periods of time since former president Mohamed Morsi was ousted in July 2013.

Hamad added that Gazan authorities have completed all of the necessary coordination with Egypt, "but it is the Egyptian authorities who decide whether the Rafah crossing will be open when the delegation arrives."

The Rafah crossing has been the principal connection between Gaza's 1.7 million residents and the outside world since the imposition of an economic blockade by the State of Israel beginning in 2007.

The blockade has severely limited the imports and exports of the Gaza Strip and has led to frequent humanitarian crises and hardship for Gazans.

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