Egypt to reopen Rafah crossing for return of stranded Palestinians

RAFAH, GAZA - MARCH 11: Members of the Palestinian Ministry of Health in partnership with the World Health Organisation (WHO), set up outdoor tents for the preliminary medical examination hospital of suspected coronavirus patients at the Rafah border crossing with Egypt, in Rafah, Gaza on March 11, 2020. (Photo by Ashraf Amra/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
FILE PHOTO: Members of the Palestinian Ministry of Health in partnership with the World Health Organisation (WHO), set up outdoor tents for the preliminary medical examination hospital of suspected coronavirus patients at the Rafah border crossing with Egypt, in Rafah, Gaza. (Photo by Ashraf Amra/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Egypt will reopen the Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip for three days next week to allow Palestinians stranded in Egypt to return home, the Palestinian embassy in Cairo said on Saturday.

The embassy said in a statement that it was informed by the Egyptian authorities that the crossing will be opened from Tuesday until Thursday.

Palestinian Ambassador to Egypt Diab al-Louh thanked Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi and the Egyptian authorities for their sincere and tireless efforts to alleviate the burdens on the Palestinian people, it said.

The crossing has been shut down since mid-March as part the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus to the coastal Palestinian enclave.

On April 13, Egypt reopened the crossing for four days to allow the return of the stranded Palestinians in Egypt.

Controlled by Egypt, the Rafah crossing is currently the only link between the Gaza Strip and the outside world, since another two crossings are tightly controlled by Israel.