Egypt

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 3rd July 2012.

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Photo of Stephen Phillips Stephen Phillips Conservative, Sleaford and North Hykeham

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what support his Department is providing to maintain security at crossing points on the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt.

Photo of Alistair Burt Alistair Burt The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

We are not currently providing any support to maintain security at crossing points on the border between Gaza and Egypt. At present, Hamas controls the Palestinian side of these crossing points. The UK does not have any direct contact with Hamas. The Quartet have set out clearly that Hamas must renounce violence, recognise Israel and accept previously signed agreements.

The EU Border Assistance Mission Rafah (EUBAM Rafah) was launched on 24 November 2005, to monitor the operations of the border crossing point between the Gaza Strip and Egypt and build Palestinian capacity in border management, after Israel and the Palestinian Authority concluded an Agreement on Movement and Access on 15 November 2005. However, EUBAM Rafah has been unable to fulfil its mandate since 2007 because the EU classifies Hamas as a terrorist organisation and therefore does not have direct contact with Hamas.

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