Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Breaking News

Egypt Closes Gaza Border After Kidnapping of Police

Egyptian police blocked the crossing into the Gaza Strip on Friday in protest against the kidnapping of seven of their colleagues by Islamist gunmen, witnesses said.

Officers strung barbed wire across the Rafah border post and chained up the gates, leaving hundreds of Palestinians stranded on both sides of the fence, locals told Reuters.

Gunmen abducted the seven police and soldiers on a road between the Sinai towns of el-Arish and Rafah on Thursday, demanding the release of imprisoned militants in exchange for the men.

Three of those abducted have worked at the crossing, locals told Reuters.

Hardline Islamist groups based in North Sinai have exploited the collapse of state authority after the 2011 uprising that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak to launch attacks across the border into Israel and on Egyptian targets.

The protesting police called on Egypt’s Islamist President Mohamed Mursi to help free their colleagues. They said they would not open the crossing until the men were released, state news agency MENA reported.

A policeman was released shortly after the abduction as a sign of goodwill, but there was no information on the six remaining men, security sources told Reuters.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.