Palestinians walk past trucks loaded with gravel at the Kerem Shalom crossing between Israel and the southern Gaza Strip December 30, 2012..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
WASHINGTON – Israel did not provide the US with advance notice of its plan to close Kerem Shalom, the main commercial crossing into Gaza, a US official told The Jerusalem Post.
The IDF said the closure would apply to the import and export of commercial goods but not to humanitarian supplies, such as food and medicine. Those items will have to be approved on an individual basis by the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories.
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A US National Security Council official noted this exception to the Post
, stating: “Food and medical supplies are being allowed through. We hope that Hamas ceases its violent and destructive acts so that the crossing may reopen,” suggesting support for the Israeli move.
Video footage of the strike on a Hamas terror tunnel near the Kerem Shalom Crossing and terror sites in the Gaza Strip, May 29, 2018 (IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Announcing the closure, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he was “wielding a heavy hand against Hamas” in light of its launching incendiary aerial devices toward Israel.
Trump officials have been concentrating on an aid package for Gaza, which is facing a dire humanitarian crisis.
“The US government was not given advance notice of the closure,” the US official continued. “This is an internal Israeli decision.”
Kushner says U.S. peace plan coming soon after Middle East visit, June 24, 2018 (Reuters)