Gazans Are Restricted From Performing Umrah And Hajj
Thousands of people are enclosed in Gaza city and are unable to perform Umrah or Hajj, as the border are closed and no one can cross them. Recently about 7500 pilgrims from Gaza started their journey to Mecca but in their way they came to know that the borders are closed for Gazans and no one can cross the border.
Egypt closed its border with Gaza from October 24, 2014 while saying that it has some security concerns in the northern Sinai region. On the other side Israel completely banned the movement across the border, consequently the Gaza is now a prison for its residents.
Moreover this, the war between Israel and Gaza results in to huge destruction; each year thousands of homes are shattered and thousands of people are displaced from their homes.
A pilgrim in Gaza, FARES Hayek said;
‘I wait each hour for my pilgrimage, and each day is just like a year to me’
Fares Hayek is of 80, and in last November he applied for pilgrimage to Mecca with his wife, children and his grandchildren.
On the other side the economic activity for travel agents also got a hit from blocked borders. The head of association AWAD ABU MAZKOUR which also represents the travel agents said; that
‘The agents are losing about $140,000 each month which is the cost of booking hotels, bank guarantees, license costs and many others overheads’ this is only due to the tension on the border.