- January 7, 2008
- 2 minutes read
Mushir Al Masri: End of Pilgrims Crisis a Victory for Egyptian, Palestinian Will
The crisis of the pilgrims stranded for a week ago on Egyptian borders came to end on Wednesday, Jan, 2nd, 2008, and they were allowed to enter Gaza Strip through Rafah Border Crossing.
Egypt has allowed in early December 2007 these pilgrims to leave Gaza from Rafah Border Crossing to perform pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia . However, Egyptian authorities demanded them, on their return from pilgrimage, to sign pledges that they return to Gaza Strip through the Israeli-controlled Karam Abu Salem crossing and not to return through Rafah Crossing, triggering the week long crisis.
As a result to the pilgrims” insistence on not returning through the Israeli controlled Karam Abu Salem crossing and as Israeli demands were ignored, these pilgrims remained stranded off the Egyptian port of Noweiba until they embarked on the port and were carried by buses to Al-Arishand were allowed to enter Gaza through Rafah Crossing Wednesday after a week of steadfastness and suffering.
For his part, Mushir Al Masri, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council and Hamas spokesman, welcomed in a statement to Ikhwanweb this decision and saw it as a victory to the Palestinian will and the will of pilgrims who insisted on returning to Gaza through the crossing from which they left the strip.
Seeing it as a victory for the Palestinian and Egyptian sovereignty over Rafah Crossing without any Israeli interventions, Al Masri praised the Egyptian efforts to solve this crisis and address calls for intervention in this regard.
Al Masri pointed out that the pilgrims” return through Rafah Crossing despite the pressures exercised on Egypt show that Egypt and all Arab and Islamic countries in general can take a bold and responsible attitude for ending the deadly blockade imposed on Gaza Strip.
“This is what our Palestinian people aspire to. We believe that Egypt is stronger than any Israeli blackmails, and is bigger that than the schemes of the Palestinian President Abu Mazen”, he said.
It is worth mentioning that the Arab Organization for Human Rights in Britain held the Egyptian government fully accountable for the Palestinian pilgrims” safety, and it called in a statement for not participating in ” the humanitarian massacre that Gaza citizens are currently facing”.