Fatah withdraws officers from Gaza-Egypt crossing

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Palestinian Authority says it is withdrawing its officers from a key crossing point between the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and Egypt.

The announcement on Sunday came amid rising tension between the Islamic militant movement, which took control of Gaza in a 2007, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party.

The Palestinian Authority says Hamas has harassed and detained officers as part of a weeklong effort to stop its rival from holding a rally in Gaza to mark Fatah’s anniversary. The PA’s withdrawal of its officers from the Rafah crossing apparently aims to put pressure on Hamas.

Hamas handed control of the crossing to Abbas’s Palestinian Authority in 2017 as part of Egyptian efforts to reconcile the two parties.

Abbas met with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi in Cairo on Saturday.

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