Israeli army burns down Rafah crossing's departure hall

Israeli army burns down Rafah crossing's departure hall
A photo circulated by Israeli soldiers’ accounts on social media displays the departure hall completely burned.
2 min read
17 June, 2024
Israeli army burns the departure hall at the Rafah crossing amid efforts to transfer it to Kerem Shalom (Getty image)

The Israeli army on Monday reportedly burned the departure hall and several facilities on the Palestinian side of the Rafah land crossing in the southern Gaza Strip. 

A photo circulated by Israeli soldiers' accounts on social media showed the departure hall completely burned.

"This is a new crime committed by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinians by besieging them and preventing the sick and wounded from their last hope of travelling and receiving treatment abroad," the government's media office in Gaza said in a press statement.

A Palestinian source who preferred not to be named claimed The New Arab that  "the Israeli army did not burn the crossing spontaneously, but rather as part of a pre-planned plan to demolish the current crossing."

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According to the source, there is a US-Israeli plan to transfer the Rafah land border crossing to the Kerem Shalom area adjacent to the crossing to facilitate tighter security supervision over the crossing and prevent any Hamas members from escaping to and from the Strip.

The source alleges that in the coming weeks, "Israel and the United States will announce their new plan, which means that Israel seeks to impose its security control over the Gaza border."

 The Israeli army seized the Rafah crossing and the Philadelphi Road on 7 May. Since then, the Egyptian authorities have closed the crossing in protest of the Israeli presence at the crossing, which violates the 2005 crossing agreement between the two countries.