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Palestinian party warns against foreign control of Rafah crossing

Ramallah, May 8 (Prensa Latina) The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine warned that any foreign group that assumes management of the Rafah crossing in Gaza will be considered an occupying force and therefore a legitimate target.

The border crossing is purely Palestinian and Egyptian according to international law, the party stated, in allusion to Israel’s plans to hand it over to a security company from the United States.

The group condemned the recent assault by the Israeli Army on the site, which is fundamental to the entry of food, medicine and fuel to the Gaza Strip, and stressed that the operation “is a crime whose objective is a military exhibition, to get a false image of victory and increase pressure on the resistance.”

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Government of Benjamin Netanyahu intends to transfer responsibility for managing the Rafah crossing to a US-based private military company after the military campaign is over.

The newspaper indicated that the members of the firm are former US special forces personnel, trained to protect strategic sites in conflict zones in Africa.

After the assault on the crossing, international pressure increased on Netanyahu to prevent an attack on the neighboring city of Rafah, where more than one million Palestinians have taken refuge. On several occasions the politician has defended taking action against the city with the argument of defeating Hamas in its last bastion, but the United Nations, several countries and non-governmental organizations have warned about the consequences for civilians, who are already suffering after seven months of war.