Israel pressures Egypt to accept Gaza refugees for foreign debt relief

ER Editor: Is Israel’s ability to influence Egypt financially based on all the US taxpayer money it’s been receiving forever (now $20 million per DAY)? Notice the leverage Israel feels it has with the World Bank.

This map shows the Northern Sinai governate in Egypt, where Israel would like to relocate Gazans, aka ‘ethnic cleansing’. It’s been attempting to do this for years, through successive Egyptian administrations. It hasn’t given up.


This additional report from The Cradle news desk shows that some Palestinians are going to be evacuated to Egypt for medical help, as well as some foreign nationals. We wonder if Israel would regard this move as a ‘toe in the water’. See —

Limited evacuation of Palestinians to Egypt gets underway

Of note:

Qatar has mediated a deal between Egypt, Hamas, and Israel, under US supervision, to allow a limited evacuation of foreign passport holders from Gaza into Egypt through the Rafah border crossing.  

The agreement is said also to allow dozens of critically injured Palestinians to be allowed to cross the border. However, there is no timeline for how long the border will be opened.

A health official in Gaza said that 80 wounded and 400 foreign nationals or dual passport holders will be allowed leave. Al-Jazeera’s Arabic reporter Hatim Omar has reported that ambulances are still waiting on the Gaza side to take those injured.

The deal does not involve other negotiations, including the release of Israelis held by Hamas and the opening of a safe corridor to allow needed humanitarian aid into Gaza.


Israel pressures Egypt to accept Gaza refugees for foreign debt relief

Since the Hamas attack on 7 October, Israel is seeking support for long-standing plans to forcibly transfer Gaza’s 2.3 million inhabitants to Egypt’s Sinai


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is seeking to pressure Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to take in refugees from the Gaza Strip and has offered that the World Bank write off Egypt’s large foreign debt in return, Israel’s Yediot Ahronoth reported on 31 October.

Recently, Israel also turned to international leaders and asked them to try to convince Egyptian President Sisi to accept refugees in Egypt’s Sinai. Sisi refused the idea, saying that Sinai would become a base for Palestinian resistance groups to attack Israel, creating security problems for Cairo.

Egypt is vulnerable to Israeli pressure as it has suffered from record inflation and foreign currency shortages in recent years, making it difficult for the North African country to repay its external debts and pay for crucial imports, including wheat.

“What is happening now in Gaza is an attempt to force citizens to take shelter and immigrate to Egypt – and we will not accept that,” Sisi emphasized.

Sisi said that if Israel wants to keep Palestinians in Gaza safe from an expected large-scale Israeli ground assault, they should be allowed to evacuate to Israel’s southern Negev desert region and then return after Hamas is defeated.

He added: “Egypt opposes any attempt to resolve the Palestinian issue through military means or through the forced displacement of Palestinians from their land – whatever will be at the expense of the countries of the region.” Sisi said that if his citizens were called upon to do so, millions of them would take to the streets and demonstrate against the passage of Gazans to Sinai.

About 2.4 million Palestinians live in the Gaza Strip. At the beginning of the war, many of them flocked towards the Rafah crossing, which was closed.

Netanyahu’s offer to Sisi comes after the Israeli Ministry of Intelligence recommended on 13 October that Israel use the war with Hamas to forcibly transfer Gaza’s 2.3 million residents to Egypt’s Sinai as refugees and prevent them from ever returning, in a repeat of the 1948 Nakba.

The plan was leaked by activists from the Likud party to gauge Israeli and international opinion over such a plan. The Ministry of Intelligence is headed by Gila Gamliel of Likud.

In 2010, Gamliel and Netanyahu asked then Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak to implement the same plan. Mubarak rejected the idea and was deposed in January 2011 following street protests organized and supported by Egyptian activists working in concert with the US State Department.

Netanyahu made a similar request to Mubarak’s successor, Mohammad Morsi, in 2012, which Morsi also rejected.

Sisi then deposed Morsi in 2013. In 2014, Netanyahu made a similar proposal to Sisi in which Israel would annex settlements in the West Bank and Palestinians would receive part of northern Sinai.

Israel’s settlement movement has sought to reconquer Gaza and re-establish the Gush Katif settlement there ever since then-prime minister Ariel Sharon ordered the evacuation of Jewish settlers from the strip in 2005. Israel has maintained a suffocating economic and military siege on Gaza since that time.



Featured image, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi: 360b/Shutterstock


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