PA Intel Chief arrives in Gaza

Mahmud Hams

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The crossing was set to reopen on Wednesday, but the Palestinian Authority announced that the opening would be delayed by at least several weeks, due to disagreements between Fatah and Hamas over responsibility for the crossing.

For the first time in ten years, the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt is manned by security forces loyal to the national unity government of the Palestinian Authority.

Palestinian and Egyptian flags wave over two photos of Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, and Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, hanging on the main gate of the Rafah crossing border with Egypt, in the Southern Gaza Strip.

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Faraj's arrival in Gaza came less than a week before a meeting of Fatah, Hamas and other Palestinian factions in Cairo, which is supposed to deal with issues related to reconciliation.

Egypt's border with the Gaza Strip had been totally sealed since August, and was largely closed for years beforehand. The agreement enables the PNA to take over control of the Gaza Strip. However, in addition to Hamas' refusal to disband its military wing, sources have confirmed to The Media Line that the terror group is likewise declining to immediately cede control over Gaza's Interior Ministry, a potential major obstacle to Abbas' prospective governance.

The PA wants to implement a 2005 agreement that would see European observers stationed at the Rafah Crossing, as well as security coordination with Israel.

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