Abbas says situation in Palestinian areas deteriorating
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Tuesday the situation in the Palestinian areas is deteriorating, after decisions by the EU to cut off aid following the formation of the Hamas-led government.
"The situation is deteriorating in a dramatic and tragic way," Abbas told reporters, according to the AP. "All countries have cut off their aid to the Palestinians under the pretext that the money is going to the government. But in fact it does not go to the government. It goes to the Palestinian people and human services."
Meanwhile, forces loyal to Abbas assumed control of the Gaza Strip's border with Egypt on Tuesday. Abbas had been under international and Israeli pressure to take control of the Palestinian-run border away from the Hamas-led cabinet.
About 150 presidential guards, moved into Rafah in a 25-vehicle convoy and took over activities from security forces employed by the interior ministry, Reuters reported.
Hamas did not like this move. "It contributes to attempts to deprive the government of some of its authority," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said. "We hope the decision will be reconsidered."