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Foreign nationals in Gaza to be allowed passage into Egypt

by Lance Luo October 16, 2023 4:12 AM 2 min read
Smoke rises from buildings in northern Gaza as the Israeli military bombards the territory on Oct. 15, 2023. (Alexi J. Rosenfeld/Getty Images)
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Foreign passport holders trapped in Gaza will be allowed to cross into Egypt via the Rafah border starting on Oct. 16 at 9 a.m. local time, a Palestinian official told NBC News.

When the border opens to allow evacuating foreign nationals into Egypt, humanitarian aid will also be able to enter Gaza through the crossing.

The announcement comes immediately after a meeting between U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in Cairo on Oct. 15.

Around 260 Ukrainian nationals are still located in Gaza and have not been able to evacuate from the besieged territory.

Just two hours before a planned evacuation of foreigners via the Rafah crossing on Oct. 14, Israeli authorities withdrew permission to open the border, Ukraine's Human Rights Commissioner Dmytro Lubynets said.

Israel has complete control over the other two crossing points into Gaza and declared a siege of the territory following a devastating Hamas attack on Oct. 7, which killed 1,400 people.

Israeli authorities ordered a mass evacuation of Gaza just days ahead of a planned ground operation, triggering a logistical and humanitarian crisis.

President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video address on Oct. 15 that the evacuation of Ukrainians from Israel is ongoing, and that officials have been working to help Ukrainian citizens trapped in Gaza.

The U.N. estimates that about 1 million people have already been displaced as a result of the conflict.

More than 2,600 people in Gaza have been killed as Israel continues to hammer the densely-populated region with air strikes, Palestinian officials said.

Ukrainians trapped in besieged Gaza: ‘We are constantly bombed’
Hundreds of Ukrainians have been caught in the crossfire inside the Gaza Strip after Hamas terrorist attacks on Oct. 7 prompted Israel to respond with a total blockade and intense bombardment of the small Palestinian enclave. Ukraine is now working to evacuate 243 Ukrainian citizens from Gaza, whic…

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