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Israel closes Erez crossing in response to protests

Sept. 5, 2018 11:12 A.M. (Updated: Sept. 6, 2018 11:45 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- The Israeli authorities announced, on Wednesday, the closure of the Erez crossing (Beit Hanoun) between Israel and the northern besieged Gaza Strip, until a further notice.

The Palestinian liaison said that the Israeli authorities notified the Palestinian side of the closure, pointing out that it would be starting on Wednesday until a further notice under the pretext of organized protests that had taken place near the crossing, on Tuesday, against the United States' decision to cut all funds to the United Nations Relief and Work Agency (UNRWA).

Sources pointed out that significant damages were caused on the Palestinian side of the Erez crossing, as a result of the protests.

The Israeli authorities allowed passage into Israel to only two emergency cases, however, prevented some 400 other cases from leaving the Gaza Strip.

Israel confirmed that the crossing would be open for passengers returning to the Gaza Strip.

The Erez crossing (Beit Hanoun) is the only operating crossing used for the movement of people between Israel and the besieged Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank; the crossing is under full Israeli control.

The Erez crossing is currently used by patients seeking treatment in Israel, Jordan and the West Bank.

Diplomats, foreign missions, journalists, laborers, Palestinian merchants and holders of entry permits into Israel all pass through this crossing, considering that particularly Palestinians experience long waiting periods to obtain a permit.
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