As the Israeli operation in Gaza continues, activists in Egypt plan to go to the besieged strip in a demonstration of solidarity.
A conference at the press syndicate was held midday Saturday to announce the convoy’s plan and goals. The convoy will gather at the press syndicate and will start their journey at 7am on Sunday.
Activist Mohamed Waked said, “the revolution in Palestine is a continuation of the revolution in Egypt… we have one battle, the battle against tyranny and injustice in Mohamed Mahmoud is the same as the battle against occupation in Gaza.”
This convoy does will not endorse any specific authority, it is intended to show support to the people of Palestine from the people of Egypt.
Lawyer Haytham Mohamedein said that the convoy’s demands include a lifting of the blockade on the Gaza Strip and the opening of the Rafah border crossing. They also want the “secret clauses” of the Camp David Accords published, as a precursor to their cancellation. He added that the convoy wants the end of all relations between Arab nations and Israel.
Most of the people taking part in the convoy are individuals who don’t belong to political groups but some of the participants are from Al-Dostour party, the Social Popular Alliance Party and the Arab Democratic Nasserist Party. Political groups such as the Popular Current and the Revolutionary Socialists are also participating. The programme of the convoy in Gaza is to hold a press conference and visit the injured in hospitals.
Many meetings have been held in Egypt regarding Gaza. Khaled Misha’al, head of Hamas, has arrived to discuss the situation. The Qatari head of state, Emir Khaled Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, as well as Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Cairo on Saturday to discuss the deteriorating situation in Gaza.
The situation remains tense as possible ground operations by the Israeli army loom closer. According to MENA, the Israeli army is spreading mobile artillery in the areas surrounding the Gaza Strip in preparation for ground operations.
Israel claims that the military operation targets terror sites and that in the past three days, the number of rockets fired into Israel total 410, in addition to over 200 which were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defence system. So far the death toll on the Palestinian side is 39, including children and a pregnant woman. On the Israeli side, three have been killed.
According to The New York Times, Israel targeted the offices of Gaza’s Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh overnight on Saturday as well as 200 other targets. Ma’an news agency reported that nine were killed in raids overnight, including three members of Hamas’s armed wing. The New York Times added that these strikes early Saturday were in response to rockets fired from Gaza which have reached Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Rockets fired by armed groups in Gaza in the past have usually not reached as far as Tel Aviv.
The Tunisian Foreign Minister visited Gaza on Saturday and said that the attacks are against international law.
Prime Minister Hisham Qandil visited the strip on Friday and met the injured. He also spoke with Haniyeh.
Egyptian hospitals in the Governorate of North Sinai are ready to receive injured from the Gaza Strip and ten ambulances in Egypt are ready to transport the injured from the Rafah border. The injured who have already been treated in Sinai hospitals are being transported to Cairo where they will resume treatment.