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Palestinian official: Egypt turmoil leaves Hamas high and dry
July 11, 2013 09:25
Security official says unrest could lead to revolution in Gaza; Egyptian army tightens grip on smuggling tunnels along the border.
A Palestinian officer on alert near the border with Egypt

A Palestinian officer on alert near the border with Egypt370. (photo credit:Reuters)

Hamas has been isolated due to the Muslim Brotherhood's fall in Egypt, according to a Palestinian security official, Israel Radio reported.

"Hamas is facing it's most difficult period since it has lost many important allies in the region, and especially (former Egyptian president) Mohamed Morsi," the official said.

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Egypt will both limit the movement of Hamas' top officials, as well as tighten its stance on weapons smuggling along the border with the Gaza strip.

Recently the Rafah crossing, the main border crossing between Egypt and Gaza, has been closed due Egyptian crisis which has lead to Morsi's fall. Several Gazans were stranded on the wrong side of the border until Wednesday, when the crossing was opened shortly.

The Egyptian army's crackdown on smuggling along the border, has also caused an added financial strain in Gaza, specifically due to the lack of fuel often brought through underground tunnels. Fuel arriving through Israel is usually twice the price.

The official believes that Hamas' isolation, coupled with the area's financial woes, could possibly lead to a revolution against their rule in Gaza.

Last week, in the wake of the Egyptian turmoil, Fatah leaders called on Palestinians to overthrow Hamas. So far, no such attempt has been reported.

Khaled Abu Toameh and Reuters contributed to this report.
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