Egyptian official says Rafah crossing was closed to pressure Hamas

An Egyptian official says the country closed its main border crossing point with the Gaza Strip today amid tensions with the territory’s Hamas rulers.

He says the move is meant to pressure Hamas because of the “differences” between Cairo and the terror group over lack of progress in both the Egyptian-led, indirect talks with Israel, and also efforts to reconcile Palestinian factions.

It was the first time the Rafah crossing was shuttered during a workday since early this year. Egyptian authorities kept it open during the 11-day war between Israel and Hamas in May.

Members of Palestinan security forces stand guard at the closed off Rafah border crossing to Egypt in the southern Gaza Strip, on August 23, 2021 (SAID KHATIB / AFP)

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