The Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak has ordered the opening of the Rafah border crossing to allow humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip, the official MENA agency reported. The order came a day after a deadly raid by Israeli commandos on an aid flotilla bound for Gaza, which has been under a crippling Israeli blockade since 2007. "Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak has given orders to open the Rafah border crossing to allow humanitarian and medical aid into the Gaza Strip, as well as to receive medical cases which require access to Egyptian territory," MENA said.
"This comes as part of Egypt's moves to ease the suffering of the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip." According to Egyptian security sources in Rafah, the border opened at 10.30am and no date has been set for it to close again. The Rafah border is Gaza's only crossing that bypasses Israel. Egypt has kept it largely closed, opening it for humanitarian cases on two days a week. A 2005 agreement brokered by the United States, put the Palestinian Authority and Israel in charge of the border, with observation from the European Union.