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Palestinians exit Gaza, via Egypt, for treatment abroad

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GAZA, 26 May 2018 [Fik/News Sources]: At least 33 injured Palestinians have left the Gaza Strip to receive medical treatment abroad since Egypt opened its Gaza border last week, Hamas, which has remained in de facto control of the strip since 2007, said Friday.

“So far, only 33 of the roughly 13,000 people injured in the demonstrations have been able to leave the strip for treatment overseas,” Hamas said in a statement.

“Jordan took in 30 of the injured, while Egypt absorbed the remaining three,” the statement added.

According to Gaza’s Health Ministry, more than 13,000 Palestinians have been injured by Israeli army gunfire -- and 120 killed -- since they began holding peaceful rallies near the Gaza-Israel security fence two months ago.

Last week, Egypt announced it would open the Rafah border crossing linking Gaza to Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula -- for the entire month of Ramadan -- to allow injured demonstrators to receive treatment abroad.

Blockaded by Israel by air, land and sea since 2007, the Gaza Strip has seven border crossings linking it to the outside world.

Six of these are controlled by Israel, while the seventh -- at Rafah -- is controlled by Egypt, which has kept it closed for the most part since the country’s 2013 military coup.

Last Wednesday, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Recep Akdag said Israel and Egypt had refused to allow Turkish aircraft to land at their respective airports to transport injured Palestinians to Turkey for treatment.

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