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last updated March 2, 2011 4:17 PM (EST+7)
Egypt wall
Read more: 
Egypt wall, closure, wall of death, wall of shame, Gaza war, war on Gaza, Hamas, Rafah, Gaza, Gaza Strip, Egypt, tunnels, smuggling

In December 2009, Egypt began constructing an underground steel wall along its 14-km-long border with Gaza. Hamas, the Islamic movement that governs the Gaza Strip, expressed its concern that the wall puts further strain on an already isolated enclave, calling the Egyptian project a “wall of death”.


EnlargeRiot police stand during a demonstration at the port of Al-Arish, Egypt, Tuesday night, Jan. 5, 2010. (AP/IHH HO)
Multimedia
AP: Smugglers already breaking through Egypt`s wall
Jan. 6, 2010 10:35 AM (EST+7)
British MP condemns Gaza war
Jan. 16, 2010 12:19 PM (EST+7)
Al-Jazeera Int: Gaza's zoo for sale
April 25, 2010 8:25 AM (EST+7)
UN helps free Gaza of Israeli bombs
April 4, 2010 8:11 PM (EST+7)
Background
Gaza blockade
Economy (Palestinian)
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JMCC Gaza Media Contact List (Updated Nov. 18)
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Gaza closure: not another year!
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No Exit: Israel's Curfew Policy in the Occupied Palestinian Territories
Palestinian Education: A Threat to Israel's Security?
Poll No. 67, January 2009 - Palestinian opinions after the Gaza War
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"The West Bank Barrier" OCHA, April 2009
A New Look at the Tanzimat: The Case of the Province of Jerusalem, by Haim Gerber, 1989
All Eyes on Rafah - al-Ahram Weekly, Jan 2009

Egyptian intelligence sources said the wall would run as deep as 30 meters and would be rigged with sensors and pressurized hoses to flood tunnels with seawater. The construction of the barrier should be finished within months according to an Egyptian officer quoted in press reports.

The Egyptian leadership stepped up efforts to end smuggling via the Gaza tunnels after pressure from Israel and the United States. Before the Israeli invasion into the Gaza Strip in December 2008, some 3,000 tunnels were operational; after the conflict there were only approximately 150 underground passages left.

News on Egypt wall
Israel thwarts telco Wataniya Palestine's Gaza launchApril 16, 2014 5:35 AM (EST+7)
Israel kills Gazan blamed for rockets during Sharon funeralJan. 22, 2014 5:38 PM (EST+7)
Palestinian killed in Gaza in targeted Israeli airstrikeMay 1, 2013 6:19 AM (EST+7)

Since the war on Gaza, however, the tunnels have grown in sophistication and Egypt says it fears destabilization from the smuggling trade.

The Center for Islamic Research at the al-Azhar school in Cairo issued a fatwa (religious opinion) saying that the construction of a steel barrier between Egypt and Gaza was in line with Islamic teachings. It stated that Egypt’s legitimate right was to defend its territory and to stop the damage caused by the tunnels.


Sources
Egypt building iron wall on Gaza border to stop smuggling, Haaretz, December 9, 2009
Egypt constructs huge Gaza wall, The Independent, December 11, 2009
Egypt's Gaza wall months from completion - Israel, Reuters, December 30, 2009
Egypt fatwa on Gaza wall stirs controversy, al-Arabiya.net, January 3, 2010
Cairo's plan B, Gamal A. G. Soltan, Bitterlemons, January 14, 2010 Edition 2 Volume 8
Gaza border: Why Egypt is building a steel underground wall, Sarah A. Topol, The Christian Science Monitor, December 14, 2009
Egypt starts building steel wall on Gaza Strip border, Christian Fraser, BBC News, December 9, 2009
Egypt's barrier along Gaza border called 'wall of shame', Jeffrey Fleishman and Amro Hassan, Los Angeles Times, December 21, 2009
Hamas urges Egypt to halt Gaza border wall, Reuters, January 15, 2010
Map and illustration of Egypt wall, BBC News website, December 9, 2009 (GIF picture)



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