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Egyptian police block international action in solidarity with Gaza

On March 31st, the European Campaign to End the Siege on Gaza, comprising around 30 international activists from the Basque country, Austria, Scotland, Norway, Italy, Netherlands, France, Spain, Greece, Turkey, Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, America and India attempted to get in to Gaza.

The group left Cairo around 8 in the morning after a small demonstration on a bus plastered with Palestinian flags and posters about the continuing siege on Gaza. They made it over the Suez Canal, but were stopped at a checkpoint about 170 km from Rafah.

There the Egyptian police refused to let them pass. The activists then left the bus and held a demonstration against the siege, but specifically against the complicity of European governments and the Egyptian government in continuing the siege. The roads leading onward were blocked and the Egyptian people inside the waiting cars expressed their solidarity with the people of Gaza.

The police still would not let the group pass, so the group decided to walk to Gaza. After an hour of
walking through the desert, and some hours of negotiations, the Egyptian police, aided by the army,
forced the group to turn back. When they returned to Cairo a demonstration and press conference was held in front of the European Union representation office.