MADRID – Spain is preparing an evacuation of its citizens from the Gaza Strip via the border crossing with Egypt. This follows negotiations with both Israel and Egypt.
Salah al Sousi, coordinator of the Spanish community in Gaza, confirms this. Salah al Sousi, who previously coordinated evacuations from Gaza in 2008 and 2014, estimates that there are currently just over 250 Spanish nationals in the area.
“People will go to Rafah individually, there is no specific meeting point, which makes it very difficult,” Al Sousi explained. The meeting point in Rafah will be open from 12 noon to 5.00 pm, where a delegation from the Spanish Embassy in Egypt will await the evacuees.
Departure to Spain
“Once on the Egyptian side, a delegation from the Spanish Embassy in Egypt will meet us and take us to Cairo. From there we will wait for a plane from Madrid to take us back to Spain,” Al Sousi added.
Current situation in Gaza
Israel’s intensive bombing of the Gaza Strip, in retaliation for a deadly attack by the Islamist organisation Hamas last Saturday, has already left more than 1,900 dead and 7,700 injured. In addition, there is a complete blockade by Israel that prevents the flow of goods, food, water, electricity and fuel, along with severe disruptions to telephone and internet services.
On Friday, Israel warned residents of the northern part of the Gaza Strip, about a million people, to urgently move to the southern part. This is due to a planned intensified military campaign against the Hamas-dominated city of Gaza.