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Monday, January 07, 2019, 10:26
Fatah withdraws officers from Gaza-Egypt crossing
By Associated Press
Monday, January 07, 2019, 10:26 By Associated Press

Members of the Islamist Hamas movement's security forces check a list for Palestinians waiting for permission in Khan Yunis to cross into Egypt through the Rafah border crossing, in the southern Gaza Strip on May 12, 2018. (SAID KHATIB / AFP)

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — The Palestinian Authority says it is withdrawing its officers from a key crossing point between the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and Egypt.

Hamas handed control of the crossing to Abbas's Palestinian Authority in 2017

The announcement on Sunday came amid rising tension between the Islamic militant movement, which took control of Gaza in a 2007, and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party.

READ MORE: Gaza's fatal ritual: Endless protests, mounting casualties

The Palestinian Authority says Hamas has harassed and detained officers as part of a weeklong effort to stop its rival from holding a rally in Gaza to mark Fatah's anniversary. The PA's withdrawal of its officers from the Rafah crossing apparently aims to put pressure on Hamas.

ALSO READ: Abbas: Reconciliation possible if Hamas hands over power in Gaza

Hamas handed control of the crossing to Abbas's Palestinian Authority in 2017 as part of Egyptian efforts to reconcile the two parties.

Abbas met with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi in Cairo on Saturday.

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