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Israel stops car imports to Gaza Strip

The Erez Crossing between Gaza and Israel, closed on the Gaza-side by Hamas officials in response to the assasination of one of it's leaders, Mazen Fuqaha, in the Gaza Strip on March 24, 2016 [Mohammed Asad / Middle East Monitor]
The Erez Crossing between Gaza and Israel in the Gaza Strip on 24 March, 2016 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

The Automobile Importers Association in the Gaza Strip said yesterday that Israeli occupation authorities have stopped allowing cars into the besieged enclave, Turkey's Anadolu Agency reported.

The association said in a statement that the Palestinian Ministry of Transport and Communications in the city of Ramallah confirmed that Israel has stopped "allowing cars in to Gaza without giving any reasons".

The association explained that about 88 vehicles were currently stationed at the Israeli controlled Erez (Beit Hanoun) crossing, waiting to enter Gaza ahead of the Jewish holidays.

"We initially thought that the cars were not ready to enter due to security checks, but after an inquiry from the Ministry of Transport and Communications in Ramallah, they confirmed that the entry was stopped without mentioning the reasons," the statement said.

Read: Israel force Gazans to give up information to travel through Erez

According to the association, not allowing the cars to enter will cause heavy losses to Palestinian merchants.

It noted that the occupation is holding about "300 cars in Israeli ports, and forces Palestinian traders to pay fees for storing them there, which leads to additional financial burdens."

In the statement, the association called on the responsible authorities to intervene and pressure the Israeli side to allow the entry of cars.

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