Israel seals off Gaza crossings

PressTV –  Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:19PM |Ashraf Shannon, Press TV, Gaza

The Tel Aviv regime closed all crossings with Gaza for alleged security reasons as Israel celebrated Jewish holiday of Purim.

Israel and neighboring Egypt shut down Gaza’s crossings in June 2006, and tightened the blockade when Hamas took control of Gaza a year later.

Israel says it decided to shut the crossing during the holiday. Human rights groups say the closure of crossings on Jewish holidays amounts to a racist act on the part of Israel.

Economists say Israel closes the border crossings most of the year citing weekends and Jewish holidays and this causes more suffering to Gaza’s economy.

Israel has also been limiting the quantity of goods entering the Strip. And even in normal times the crossings open temporarily.

Prior to the blockade there were seven border crossings into Gaza, now only three operate periodically including Rafah crossing controlled by Egypt, and traffic through it remains limited.
Analysts believe that measures such as closure of crossings on occasions like Jewish holidays only intensify pressure on helpless Gazans while Israel claims that they are for security reasons.

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