Economic relief for Gaza welcomed
Thousands took to the streets on Thursday night celebrating a reconciliation deal reached between Fatah and Hamas sealed in Cairo. Loudspeakers blasted national songs as youngsters waving Palestinian and Egyptian flags danced and hugged one another.
Under the reconciliation pact, Hamas is handing over administrative control of Gaza to a Fatah-controlled government.
The deal was reached after an economic squeeze was placed on Hamas by Egypt and the Palestinian Authority.
For Huwaida Al Hadidi, a 34-year-old mother-of-seven, economic relief cannot come soon enough.
Like about 250,000 other people in Gaza, her husband is unemployed. Unable to pay their rent, the family has lived in a tent since they were evicted three days ago.
“Now that they signed a reconciliation deal, Godwilling the blockade will be lifted and people will find work and be able to earn a living for their children,” she said. Control of the Gaza border crossings by the Palestinian National Authority, which exercises limited self-rule in the occupied West Bank, could allow freer movement of people and goods across the frontier.