RAFAH, Gaza Strip – Hamas militants, angry that Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh was prevented from returning to Gaza from Egypt, burst into the Rafah crossing Thursday, sparking a gunbattle with the guards at the border terminal.
Two Hamas militants were wounded.
The militants had been waiting outside the terminal and grew impatient for Haniyeh’s return, finally breaking into the compound and shooting in the air. The Palestinian Presidential Guard, responsible for security at the terminal, began firing at them, according to an Associated Press reporter at the terminal.
Travelers in the terminal lobby ran for cover, some carrying their luggage. Women and children hid behind walls and nearby taxis outside.
The violence came after Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz ordered Rafah sealed to prevent Haniyeh from returning with tens of millions of dollars in cash.