Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist organization is demanding more concessions and if Israel refuses, the terror group warns there will be “an immediate escalation.”
On Sunday, Kerem Shalom Crossing returned to normal activity after being closed for at least a week. “In just one day, 421 trucks entered Gaza carrying 11,700 tons of goods, including food, medical equipment, fuel, & more,” the IDF Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) pointed out.
At 6 am Monday, the Gaza fishing zone was expanded from six to a record 15 nautical miles (24 kilometers). “This step is part of the civilian policy to prevent humanitarian deterioration in the Gaza Strip and a policy that distinguishes between terrorism and the civilian population,” the COGAT said.
After spending around three hours in Gaza negotiating with the Hamas leadership, the Egyptian security delegation was seen leaving the enclave at around 10 pm via the Erez Crossing. The delegation, headed by a senior official with the Egyptian General Intelligence Service, General Ahmed Abdel Khaleq, is expected to return Tuesday to continue the talks with Hamas.
Hamas officials told reporters in Gaza on Monday night they were “giving the Egyptian delegation a last chance tomorrow; if there is no change, the situation is expected to escalate dramatically.”
Hamas political bureau chief Ismail Haniyeh allegedly told United Nations Middle East envoy Nickolay Mladenov on Monday that Israel’s treatment of Palestinian Authority terrorists incarcerated in Israeli prisoners could affect any arrangement between Israel and the terror group.
An incendiary terror balloon was launched towards southern Israel during the day on Monday despite the concessions already implemented by Israel, and IDF soldiers were kept on high alert along the border as threats of rocket attacks continued from the enclave.