Egypt Shortens 4-day Opening of Gaza Crossing Point
Egypt shut its Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, a day early after opening it to travelers and goods on Monday for what should have been four days. It was just the third time since March that the crossing was opened, with travelers requiring valid certificates proving they had tested negative for the coronavirus. The closing came due to what Egyptian sources called “monitoring violations” by Hamas, the Islamist ruler of the coastal Palestinian enclave. Sources suggest the move was linked to concerns over support by Hamas for armed attacks against Egyptian security forces in the Sinai Peninsula by an affiliate of Islamic State. Egypt has been brokering efforts by Hamas and Israel to reach an agreement for a quiet border, with occasional violations due to rocket launches from the Gaza Strip, as well as incendiary balloons launched toward Israel.