Gaza: Palestinians break through Egyptian border wall

Rafah, 23 Jan. (AKI) - Thousands of Palestinians surged into Egypt from the Gaza Strip on Wednesday after militants exploded holes in the border wall.

On the sixth day of Israel's blockade, men, women and children rushed across the border to to buy food, fuel and other supplies that have diminished due to the blockade, aimed at stopping rocket attacks from Gaza.

Quoting Hamas sources, Arab TV network, Al Jazeera said Palestinian fighters had set off up to 17 explosions on the wall running through Rafah on the border.The security forces later closed most holes, but left two open to allow the flow of human traffic.

The militant group Hamas, which controls Gaza, has urged Egypt to open its border.

Several people - including up to 60 women - were injured on Tuesday when Egyptian riot police clashed with Palestinians who attempted to break through the border point.

But on Wednesday police took no action to stop the influx from Gaza.

Israel closed the Gaza Strip last Thursday in a bid to stop Qassam rocket fire attacks on southern Israel.

On Tuesday Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak eased restrictions and allowed limited transfers of fuel for the power plant and provide medical supplies for hospitals.

Security sources told the Jewish daily, Haaretz, on Tuesday that Israel intends to keep the crossings into the Gaza Strip permanently closed except when it is necessary to provide emergency humanitarian aid.


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