Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on Wednesday accused Israel of deliberately obstructing the flow of aid to the Gaza Strip by imposing cumbersome procedures at the Rafah crossing.
This, he said, is part of a pressure tactic to secure the release of hostages held by Palestinian groups in Gaza.
“The Rafah crossing is open 24/7,” Al-Sisi declared during a speech at the Police Academy Conference Complex, marking the 72nd anniversary of Police Day. “But Israeli procedures are hindering the entry of aid.”
He vehemently denied allegations that Egypt itself was restricting aid deliveries, calling them “lies.”
“If I were the reason for preventing even a single loaf of bread from reaching Gaza, then God help me,” he proclaimed. “Rafah Crossing is open 30 days a month, around the clock.”
Al-Sisi underscored Egypt’s long history of supporting Gaza, highlighting that prior to the current conflict, they facilitated the daily passage of 600 aid trucks through Rafah. Now, that number has dwindled to a maximum of 200 trucks per day.
“The scenes in Gaza are heartbreaking,” he said, drawing attention to the devastating impact of the conflict. “Over 25,000 people have died, two-thirds of them women and children. The entire strip is in ruins.”
Expressing disbelief at the resilience of Gaza’s residents, Al-Sisi emphasized the urgent need for unobstructed aid flow.
“We cannot, and will not, close Rafah to humanitarian assistance,” he asserted. “That is something you can be absolutely certain of.”