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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 01/24/2008
EGYPT – ISRAEL – PALESTINE
Egypt blocks Palestinian ‘exodus’ in Rafah
Since yesterday Egypt’s border police has allowed some 350,000 Gazans to reach Rafah driven by the need to buy food and fuel. Ordered by Egyptian President Mubarack, police is today stopping cars and people illegally coming through the breaks in the border wall. In Israel the country’s High Court is asked to hear a petition presented by some associations who want the blockade lifted.

Rafah (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Egyptian security forces are stopping hundreds of Palestinian cars who for the second time in as many days are trying to cross the border through the blown-out wall in search of food, medicines and fuel. The net effect has been that tensions have gradually risen since this morning with brawls and scuffles breaking out between Egyptian border police and “fleeing” Gazans.

According to the United Nations, more than 350,000 people have crossed the border since yesterday to enter Egypt after parts of the border wall was destroyed overnight Tuesday. This surge by Palestinians into Rafah to buy essential items to take home was set off by Israel’s recent blockade of the Strip which was dealing a crushing blow to the population.

Initially Egypt remained neutral, allowing Palestinians to cross without hindrance. But now eyewitnesses are saying that Egyptian police are ordering Palestinians to go back to Gaza, beating their cars with truncheons.

This comes after Egyptian President Hosni Mubarack instructed his border police to stop anyone trying to illegally cross the border.

Just a few hours earlier a Foreign Ministry spokesperson had announced that the Rafah crossing would remain open because of the “humanitarian crisis.”

Yesterday Hamas, which rules Gaza, called for an “urgent” meeting with representatives of Egypt and the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) to study measures for joint control of the border.

But the PNA rejected the proposal accusing the Islamist group of embarrassing the Egyptians with its wall demolition and trying to get Arab support for its own goals.

For his part, Khaled Mashaal, the Damascus-based Hamas leader, appealed to the Arab countries to work toward ending the international boycott of the Hamas government and to lift the siege on the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile some Israeli and Palestinian organisations have filed a petition with Israel’s High Court to end the blockade. For this the tribunal is set to hold a special hearing on Sunday.


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See also
06/21/2007 ISRAEL – PALESTINE
Fallout from Palestinian crisis to be discussed at four-party summit next Monday
03/06/2008 PALESTINE - ISRAEL
Gaza priest: "They want to kill us all slowly"
by Joshua Lapide
02/01/2008 PALESTINE - ISRAEL
The Gaza border is under control, while Egypt is pushing Hamas and Abbas to dialogue
01/03/2009 ISRAEL - PALESTINE
Israel kills another Hamas leader. Gaza offensive continues
by Joshua Lapide
10/10/2006 PALESTINE
Qatari mediation between Hamas and PNA fails

Editor's choices
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ITALY - IRAQ
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul" to respond directly to Iraq's emergencyAsiaNews is launching a fundraiser to support Christians targeted by the Islamic State, thus responding to a request by the Patriarch of Baghdad and Pope Francis's urgent appeal "to guarantee all necessary assistance - especially the most urgently needed aid - to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others." More than 100,000 people have been forced to flee their homes leaving everything behind and now have nothing to live on. To help them, five euros a day are enough. The funds raised will be sent to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will distribute them according to the needs of each family.
CHINA - VATICAN
Wenzhou bishop and priests slam government's campaign against crosses and churches in Zhejiang
by Eugenia ZhangFor Mgr Vincent Zhu Weifang, from the official Church, the campaign of destruction is increasing social instability. It is real persecution against the Christian faith. The bishop apologises for failing to intervene sooner. He was hoping that the campaign would end quickly. Catholics and Protestants suffer injuries as they attempt to defend their sacred buildings. For priests in Wenzhou, the campaign is unfair and touches buildings that have all the right papers. Such "stupid acts" by the government are undermining social harmony.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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