Egypt to permanently open Rafah crossing with Gaza on Saturday

Discussion in 'Israel and Palestine' started by SergeGainsbourg, May 25, 2011.

  1. SergeGainsbourg
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    SergeGainsbourg Member

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    Egypt to permanently open Rafah crossing with Gaza on Saturday - Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

    I think this can be in Israel's interest. The problem with disengagement from Gaza has been that Israel never fully disengaged. Gaza is still dependent on Israel for electricity and the borders are monitored. I don't think this is positive for Israel.

    If Egypt wants to open the border, this is fine. Let Egypt take over responsibility for supplying electricity to Gaza and dealing with Hamas. After all, Egypt governed Gaza before 1967, let them have responsibility for the territory if they want to open the border. Meanwhile, Israel won't have to worry about any humanitarian crisis because the border is open. Everyone wins.
     
  2. docmauser1
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    inshallah.
     
  3. P F Tinmore
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    CAIRO, (PIC)-- Egyptian authorities have passed a decision to take effect this Saturday to permanently open the Rafah crossing on its borders with the Gaza Strip, except Fridays and official holidays from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

    An Egyptian official said in a statement on Wednesday that the step is one of many steps taken to ease Palestinian citizens' movement through Egyptian ports.

    In one of those steps, Palestinian women as well as men under 18 and over 40 would not require entry visas to cross the border. Also exempt are those accompanying their parents or others who have been exempt from visa requirements.

    Palestinian families entering and exiting the Gaza Strip will also be allowed to pass as long as they provide a passport or other identification. Students and patients with medical referrals will be allowed entry on condition that they provide relevant paperwork.

    Egypt to permanently open Rafah border crossing to Palestinians
     
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  4. SergeGainsbourg
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    SergeGainsbourg Member

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    I have often thought that if it were acceptable to the people living in Gaza, that this territory should be an autonomous region under the umbrella of he Egyptian state. So there could be local rule, but international and security issues are taken care of by the Egyptians. The old word Mandate might work here. An Egyptian Mandate to run the "state" of Gaza. It doesn't make any sense to me that Gaza and the West Bank be part of the same state without geographical connectivity.

    A similar type of arrangement might make sense with Jordan in the West Bank. This state could be called Palestine, but be in confederation with Jordan.
     
  5. P F Tinmore
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    Nobody wants that. Why should it happen?
     
  6. SergeGainsbourg
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    SergeGainsbourg Member

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    Here's one reason why it might move in that direction. Previously when Egypt threatened to open up the Rafah Crossing the Israelis said they would respond by giving Israel responsibility for Gaza. Egypt backed off. Now that Egypt has opened the door, Israel can hand over this responsibility. Based on your article, visa free travel through the border is already a sign of greater connection between the territories. Perhaps Egyptian companies can open factories in Gaza and provide much needed employment there. Trade could flow more directly. Gazan goods become de facto Egyptian goods on the world market as exports flow through Egypt. Perhaps the Egyptian Pound could replace the Shekel as the currency of choice as trade flows across the border. Egyptian banks could open up branches in Gaza. Etc. Etc. Etc.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  7. P F Tinmore
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    Gaza is part of Palestine. Neither the Egyptians nor the Palestinians want to change that. Economic integration through trade would be the way to go. Gaza already has hundreds of factories that cannot operate because the siege has cut off import of raw materials and the export of finished product. Gaza was also an exporter of agricultural products but the siege cut off those exports leaving Gaza with no income from the world markets.
     
  8. SergeGainsbourg
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    Yes I agree. Tighter economic integration makes complete sense. Hence my supposition that the Egyptian Pound could rapidly become the unofficial currency of Gaza with Egyptian banks there, etc.

    Now that the siege is over, then how will goods travel to market? Via Rafah of course. In the absence of duty collection at the border, they will be exported via Egypt and therefore would be Egyptian goods on the world market. Egyptian companies would be best to capitalize on the opportunity in Gaza. This would be excellent for the security of Israel because the building of the middle class in Gaza will protect against future conflict. Gazans will have something to lose and the pride that goes with producing things rather than only being dependent on international aid.

    So politically what would happen? What is the connection between Gaza and the West Bank? People can't go back and forth. Their leaders are different. The poverty in Gaza is much more extensive. These territories have been disconnected from each other for the past 63 years.
     

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