Between Egypt And Gaza, A Renewed Connection Hundreds of Palestinians crossed the newly opened border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip Saturday. NPR's Soraya Nelson reports that the move by the Egyptian government was met with restraint by Israel but joy by those who have been locked out by travel restrictions.
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Between Egypt And Gaza, A Renewed Connection

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Between Egypt And Gaza, A Renewed Connection

Between Egypt And Gaza, A Renewed Connection

Between Egypt And Gaza, A Renewed Connection

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/136765581/136765560" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Hundreds of Palestinians crossed the newly opened border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip Saturday. NPR's Soraya Nelson reports that the move by the Egyptian government was met with restraint by Israel but joy by those who have been locked out by travel restrictions.

LIANE HANSEN, Host:

The move follows the agreement reached earlier this month between Palestinian militant rivals Hamas and Fatah. NPR's Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson was on the Egyptian side of the border and has this report.

(SOUNDBITE OF CROWD TALKING)

SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON: Only a few hundred Palestinians crossed the border in Rafah on the first day it reopened. Many, like Musbah Mohamed Halawin, were infirm. The 55-year-old in a wheelchair was headed to Egypt for spinal surgery.

MUSBAH MOHAMED HALAWIN: (foreign language spoken)

SARHADDI NELSON: Fellow traveler Hasna el Rais says the Egyptian move returned a feeling of dignity to Palestinians.

HASNA EL RAIS: We have the higher spirit now because this is an example of freedom and end of every suffering in the last five years. We suffered too much.

SARHADDI NELSON: On the Gaza side, Ghazi Hamad, who heads the Border Crossing Authority, waved aside such claims.

GHAZI HAMAD: I think everything is working normally here. There's no smuggling, no criminals, no violation of law. So, I think they should not be worried about this.

(SOUNDBITE OF PEOPLE TALKING)

SARHADDI NELSON: Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson, NPR News.

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