Saturday, 13 February 2016

Hundreds rush to southern Gaza Strip after Egypt opens Rafah crossing


Hundreds of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip gathered in the southern city of Khan Younis after the Egyptian authorities in a rare move on Saturday decided to open the Rafah crossing to Egypt.

It will be the first time the crossing has been opened this year. Located on the besieged strip’s southern border, Egypt announced Rafah will be open in both directions for two days.

Gaza’s Ministry of Interior told Ma’an that 765 Palestinians had been approved to travel on Saturday.

According to authorities in Gaza, over 25,000 people with urgent needs -- including around 3,500 medical cases -- are registered and waiting to cross. Only a fraction of those registered and waiting are likely to gain passage through the crossing.

Following the announcement, hundreds of Palestinians filtered south to the Abu Yousif An-Najjar sports center, where the ministry typically checks and selects Gaza residents for travel to Egypt. more

18-year-old Palestinian shot dead after stabbing Israeli soldier in Hebron


A young Palestinian woman was shot dead on Saturday after stabbing an Israeli soldier and Palestinian bystander near the Ibrahimi Mosque in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron.

A witness told Ma’an that the young woman stabbed and lightly injured a soldier at a checkpoint near the mosque before she was shot by Israeli forces stationed on site.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed the attack to Ma’an, saying that “an assailant drew a knife on a soldier guarding the Tomb of Patriarchs,” referring to the Ibrahimi Mosque.

A Palestinian at the site of the attack was also stabbed by the young woman under circumstances that remain unclear.

A witness told Ma’an that a Palestinian attempted to grab the young woman after she stabbed the soldier, in what the witness believed to be an attempt to protect the woman from getting shot. more