The Israel Defense Forces declared the area of the Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza a closed military zone. The move is in response to five days of Israeli protesters trying to block trucks delivering humanitarian from reaching the Strip. The order was signed by the chief of the Southern Command, Major General Yaron Finkelman. This is the same general who ordered the soldiers in Gaza to clean up their graffiti.
The demonstrators include families of the 136 hostages still being held by Hamas, relatives of soldiers killed in action in Gaza, reservists rotated out of combat and civilians evacuated from the northern and southern frontiers.
Bat-Zion, the aunt of 30-year-old hostage Avinatan Or, told the Tazpit Press Service on Sunday morning that she came, “To protest the injustice that is being done with the transfer of aid to the terrorists who are holding our dear ones. We came to strengthen the leaders and to say, the people are behind you, stand up to the pressure. Do not transfer the aid to the enemy. We need to defeat Hamas, That’s the only way we’ll get our children back. We can’t defeat the enemy if in the process we help them and send them aid.”
Or was taken captive by Hamas at the Nova music festival along with his girlfriend, Noa Argamani. The 26-year-old Argamani was not among the women released during a temporary ceasefire in November.