Egyptian delegation in Gaza to contain drone incident

An Egyptian security delegation arrived in the Gaza Strip on Sunday in an attempt to defuse tensions sparked by a drone attack a day earlier.

The incident saw the aircraft being launched from the coastal enclave, fire an explosive at an Israeli military position near the border and return.

The delegation entered the Hamas-controlled enclave via the Erez crossing.

Hamas had deployed more members to the border to secure the delegation’s entry to Gaza. It also tightened security measures at the hotel where it will be staying.

These heightened measures were taken in light of recent bombings in Gaza that were carried out by Palestinian factions that follow ISIS’s ideology.

The delegation was set to arrive in Gaza at the end of the week, but recent developments forced it to depart earlier. The delegation had last visited the enclave two months ago.

Palestinian sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that the delegation will focus on defusing tensions. It held talks with Hamas officials and is set to meet with Islamic Jihad and other Palestinian factions.

“The Egyptian delegation will discuss a number of issues, including easing the suffering in Gaza and convincing Israel to commit to bilateral understandings and relations,” said Hamas spokesman Abdullatif al-Qanou.

“Hamas delegation’s recent visit was positive and will be continued with the Egyptian delegation in Gaza,” Qanou noted.

He stressed that talks with “our Egyptian brothers have not stopped and communication is always ongoing.”

On Saturday, a drone flown from Gaza fired an explosion at an Israeli military Humvee deployed along the border fence.

No Israeli soldiers were injured, but the vehicle sustained damage.

The incident came hours after the Israeli army struck several Hamas targets in the northern Gaza Strip on Friday night, in retaliation to five rockets that were fired toward southern Israel communities bordering the enclave.

source: Asharq Al-Awsat