7 May 2024

Israel controls Gaza Rafah crossing as ceasefire talks continue

Foreign Affairs Correspondent

24 hours ago Palestinians were celebrating the news that Hamas had accepted what they thought was Israel’s ceasefire proposal.

Now, their situation looks bleak again, after Israeli troops seized the Rafah border crossing – cutting off a vital aid route into Gaza.

Yesterday, the Israel Defence Forces ordered people in eastern Rafah to move to what it called an “expanded humanitarian zone” in Al Mawasi, ahead of a limited ground invasion.

After striking targets in eastern Rafah overnight, Israel announced that its troops had taken control of the Gaza side of the Rafah crossing – the only one it did not control. Israel has also imposed a naval blockade on Gaza for years.

The UN says the shutting of the two southern crossings starves Gaza of the scant humanitarian aid it had been receiving – as very little is getting through the recently reopened Erez Crossing.