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Spokesman: Egypt not responsible for tightening grip on Gaza
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09:22, December 22, 2008

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Egypt is not responsible for tightening the grip on the Palestinian territory of Gaza Strip, Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hosam Zaki said Sunday.

"Egypt absolutely rejects attempts to accuse it of being responsible for tightening the grip on Gaza," the state MENA news agency quoted Zaki as saying.

Egypt has clarified the issue of Gaza crossings, particularly the Rafah land terminal at the Egyptian-Gaza border, said Zaki, adding that Egypt "does not have the will or potentials to shoulder the responsibility" of the Palestinian enclave.

The costal strip is still considered an occupied land and "the occupier" should take the responsibility, added the spokesman.

Commenting on the Egyptian efforts to ease the humanitarian suffering of the people in Gaza, Zaki said his country allowed the entry of some 20,000 Palestinians in the past 10 months and offered shipments of relief stuff and millions of Egyptian pounds to Gazans.

In recent weeks, Israel tightened blockade on Gaza and withheld fuel supplies to Gaza's power plant after a six-month ceasefire ended Friday which was rocked by a surge of violence.


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