Sky News: Egyptian authorities close Rafah crossing
Rafah border crossing - YOUM7 (Archive)
By NOUR MOHIE EDDIN

NORTH SINAI, Egypt: Sky News reported late Tuesday that Egyptian authorities have again closed the Rafah crossing, without announcing when it will be reopened.

Egypt had opened the Rafah crossing temporarily, for three days, in order to allow Palestinians in Egypt and people traveling for their Umrah pilgrimage to Mecca, according to the Maan News Agency.

According to Maan News Agency, 338 people out of 350 traveling for their Umrah pilgrimage traveled from North Sinai through the crossing on Sunday. The general administration of the crossing sent back 12 people.

A second wave of 350 people traveling for their Umrah moved through the crossing to Gaza on Monday at noon, and a third wave traveled through the crossing that night, according to the Maan News Agency.

A number of French female activists of Algerian origin arrived at Cairo International Airport last week in an attempt to pass through the Rafah crossing to Gaza, Youm7 reported, but airport authorities told them that the crossing was closed and they should look for another crossing.

The activists instead lay in protest on the airport floor, spending 24 hours in a sit-in. Mohamed Kamel, the head of the airport security sector, said the activists consumed food and drink at the value of 8,000 EGP ($1,149) at the expense of the airport, Youm7 reported.

A representative of French intelligence at the French embassy in Cairo coordinated with Kamel and managed to end the sit-in.

Additional reporting by Rofaida Awadeen and Hager Hossam.

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