RAMALLAH, Sunday, January 6, 2019 (WAFA) – The Palestinian Authority (PA) said on Sunday that it has decided to pull out its staff working at Gaza‘s Rafah crossing with Egypt citing Hamas practices as the reason.
The PA‘s Civil Affairs Authority said in a statement that "this decision comes in the light of recent developments and brutal practices of the de facto gangs" in the Gaza Strip.
It said that the PA sent staff to the crossing "to alleviate the suffering of the siege" on Gaza, but that "since we took over the Rafah crossing, Hamas has been obstructing the work of our crew there. We had to bear a lot in order to give the opportunity for the Egyptian effort to end the division."
The statement said that "Hamas insists on consolidating the division, the last of which was summoning, arresting and abusing our employees, and we came to the conviction of the futility of their presence there because of Hamas hampering their work and tasks."
Egypt has conditioned opening the Rafah crossing, the only border crossing for Gazans besides Erez/Beit Hanoun crossing with Israel, on the PA being in charge.
The reconciliation understandings between the PA and Hamas, which controls Gaza, gives the PA full supervision of the crossings.