Egypt to keep Gaza crossing closed after Hamas takeover

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Egypt will keep its crossing with the Gaza Strip closed to departures from the Palestinian enclave after the Palestinian Authority withdrew its officials amid disagreements with Hamas.

The Gaza’s Interior Ministry, controlled by the militant group Hamas, said Monday that Egyptian officials notified them that the crossing would only be open to those entering the Gaza Strip.

Hamas handed over control of the Rafah crossing to the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority as part of a 2017 reconciliation deal. But on Sunday the Palestinian Authority withdrew its personnel from the crossing.

The withdrawal came as tensions are building between Hamas and President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party. The Palestinian Authority said Hamas arrested border officials and Fatah supporters in Gaza to prevent them from holding a rally marking the movement’s founding anniversary.

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