Photo Credit: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash 90
Egyptian soldiers stand guard on the Egyptian side of the Rafah border with Gaza.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s Special Representative for International Negotiations, Jason Greenblatt, has welcomed the notice that Gaza’s ruling Hamas terror organization had transferred control over the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt to the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority.

Greenblatt’s statement also notes that Hamas transferred control over the Erez and Kerem Shalom crossings with Israel — a surprise to many, since there were no prior announcements in Israel of any changes being made in the arrangements relating to control over either of the two Israeli land crossings.


He continued to underline, however, the necessity that Hamas accept the conditions of the Quartet of peacekeeping nations in order for any real peace process to advance between Israel and a Palestinian Authority unity government. “If Hamas is to play any role in a Palestinian government, it must accept these basic requirements,” Greenblatt emphasized.

Here’s the text of Greenblatt’s full statement issued Thursday evening:

“The United States welcomes the Palestinian Authority’s deployment yesterday to the Erez, Kerem Shalom, and Rafah crossing points in Gaza. The United States believes it is essential that the Palestinian Authority assume full responsibility for Gaza.

“The United States will be following developments in Gaza closely, while working together with the Palestinian Authority, Israel, and international donors to try to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza.

“As we’ve made clear in the past, any Palestinian government must unambiguously and explicitly commit to nonviolence, recognize the State of Israel, accept previous agreements and obligations between the parties — including to disarm terrorists — and commit to a negotiated solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. If Hamas is to play any role in a Palestinian government, it must accept these basic requirements.”

The Pal+English media outlet rejoiced over the news by tweeting a video that promised the “three main crossings” would be under the “auspices of PA presidential guards” from now on. “presidential guards” would be on duty at the “three main crossings” from now on. Moreover, ‘PalPlusEnglish‘ announced, “The government also decided to cancel the taxes collected for goods entering the strip. Is it the first promising step to end years of schism?” the media outlet wondered.