Hamas chief heads to Egypt in sign of Gaza’s improving ties
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Hamas militant group says its top leader is heading to Cairo to discuss renewed cooperation with Egyptian authorities.
Saturday marks the first time Egypt has allowed Ismail Haniyeh to leave the Gaza Strip since he was elected the Palestinian group’s chief in May.
A Hamas statement said Haniyeh and other leaders will discuss “boosting” recent easing of the blockade Egypt imposes on Gaza along with Israel.
Egypt has long accused Hamas of aiding Islamic insurgency in the neighboring Sinai Peninsula.
In recent months, Egypt has sent fuel to help reduce Gaza’s power crisis and promised to open the Rafah crossing, Gaza’s main gateway to the outside world.
Hamas has signaled its willingness by building a buffer zone along the Gaza-Sinai border to prevent movement of extremist militants and weapons.