Germany, France, Britain propose EU mission to open Gaza crossing

People march and protest against Gaza strip bombing in solidarity with Palestinians on July 26, 2014 in Milan [Photo: Shutterstock]
People march and protest against Gaza strip bombing in solidarity with Palestinians on July 26, 2014 in Milan [Photo: Shutterstock]

Germany, France and Britain have proposed reactivating a European Union mission on the Egypt-Gaza border to help stabilise the Palestinian enclave after a month-long war, a German diplomatic source said on Wednesday.

The source said German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and counterparts in Paris and London favoured restoring EU operations at the Rafah crossing that is the main window to the world for Gaza's 1.8 million Palestinians.

A two-day-old Gaza ceasefire was holding on Wednesday as Egyptian mediators pursued talks with Israeli and Palestinian envoys on an enduring end to a war in which Israeli shelling wrecked whole areas of the Islamist Hamas-dominated territory.

The so-called EU Border Assistance Mission in Rafah started work in 2005 to monitor the crossing point as part of an accord worked out by Israel and the Western-backed Palestinian Authority. The operation was halted two years later when Hamas militants seized control of the Gaza Strip.

Egypt has repeatedly shut the border over the past year, significantly increasing pressure on Gazans, who already face a rigid land and sea blockade imposed by Israel.

Egyptian diplomatic sources said that while Cairo might consider easing restrictions on movement through Rafah, it was unlikely to accept Hamas calls to allow a normal flow of trade.

Egypt insists that any discussion over Rafah take place bilaterally with the Palestinian Authority, a political rival of Hamas, rather than as part of any deal between the Palestinians and Israel to ease the Israeli blockade, the sources say.

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an european's picture

first Benjamin Netanyahu is a war criminal and should be go in trial for mass assassination first !
As long as he remains in power there will only be a short term breathe!
I don't think that actually the reactivating of a European Union mission on the Egypt-Gaza would be a good idea because of Israel's high risks of "Baby"-bombing again !

Joe Thorpe's picture

Hamas were first to start firing missiles into Israel again today, there is only one side that starts this conflict & it isn't Israel & those saying otherwise are generally Islamist trolls trying to propagate extreme Islam

an european's picture

Of course that Israel grabbed lands of them ! There was a big mistake during the course of history!
Now Palestinian civilians are in minorities , humiliated and even assassinated, expulsed , by Netanjahuu's orders without tackling the Hamas ! Seeing on Euronews what mass destruction Netanjahuu did I only have one conclusion: That Netanjahuu Banjemin is worse than a war criminal and should be sentenced in "den Haag" like Nazis even to be listed on Warbook of criminals !

an european's picture

In addition :

2000+ death and continuing to rise up because there may still be a lot of baby's .children. father and mother under the bricks .

an european's picture

For the E.U. !
Now The radicals IS is expulsing 100.000 Christians from Northern Iraq !
Americans at least prepares with airstrikes against IS !
What is the European Union doing ?
Only Watching instead helping Americans !
If the E.U. isn't able to deploy some Typhoons to support U.S. Airstrikes !
For what at least do we have an E.U. if they aren't able to go into offensive!
I ask me why we do not defend our values of Christians ?
Even here in Europe !! Rising Jihad's extremists in France !

We need more than an very tiny E.U.BG !
It's time to arm to a higher level !