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Egypt says to help evacuate ‘about 7,000’ Gaza foreign nationals

Egypt is evacuating 7,000 foreigners and dual nationals from Gaza via the reopened Rafah border crossing amidst ongoing conflict.

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CAIRO, EGYPT — Egypt will help evacuate “about 7,000” foreigners and dual nationals from the war-ravaged Gaza Strip, the foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

For the first time after weeks of deadly fighting between Israel and Palestinian militants since the Hamas attacks of 7 October, the Rafah border crossing opened on Wednesday to let people out of Gaza.

In a meeting with foreign diplomats, assistant foreign minister Ismail Khairat said Egypt was preparing “to facilitate the reception and evacuation of foreign citizens from Gaza through the Rafah crossing”.

Khairat said that involved “about 7,000” people, representing “more than 60” nationalities.

The statement did not offer specific details or a timeline for the Egyptian evacuation plan.

Egyptian officials said 76 wounded Palestinians and 335 foreign passport holders had crossed into Egypt on Wednesday.

Among those who crossed were 31 Austrians, four Italians, five French nationals and some Germans, their governments said.

State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said US citizens had also crossed from Gaza but declined to give a number.

The Hamas-run health ministry has said intense Israeli bombardment has killed nearly 8,800 people in Gaza, two-thirds of them women and children, since the fighting erupted after the October 7 attacks that Israeli officials say left 1,400 people dead.

— AFP

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