European Union Border Assistance Mission Rafah
| European Union Border Assistance Mission Rafah ： ウィキペディア英語版|
The European Union Border Assistance Mission at the Rafah Crossing Point (EU BAM Rafah) was, after the European Union Police Mission for the Gaza Strip (EU COPPS), the EU's second Civilian Crisis Management Mission in the occupied Palestinian territory.
The Mission was launched on 24 November 2005, to monitor the operations at the Rafah Border Crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt, after Israel and the Palestinian Authority concluded an Agreement on Movement and Access on 15 November 2005. When the mission was deployed at the Rafah Crossing Point (RCP), it did consist of roughly 70 personnel including a special security team.
On 13 June 2007, following the Hamas take over in the Gaza Strip, the EU BAM Head of Mission declared a temporary suspension of operations at the RCP. During the 19 months (end of November 2005 until June 2007) while the EU monitors were present at the terminal, a total of nearly 450,000 passengers used the crossing before that date, with an average of about 1,500 people a day. As of 2015, the European Union has a policy of no contact with Hamas.〔
The Rafah border crossing is vitally important to the Gaza economy and the viability of any future independent Palestinian state, since it is the Gaza Strip's only border crossing with a country other than Israel. Furthermore, after the withdrawal of Israel Defense Forces (IDF) from the Gaza Strip and the subsequent closure of the RCP, trade relations with neighboring Egypt were inhibited. Given Israeli security-related concerns about handing over control of the RCP to the Palestinian Authority (possible weapons transfers and uninhibited return of exiled extremist leaders and terrorists), EU BAM Rafah's stated aim is to provide a third party presence in the Rafah Crossing Point (RCP) in order to, in cooperation with the European Commission's institution building efforts, contribute to the opening of the Rafah Crossing Point and to build up confidence between the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
Furthermore, the broader political objective is to support the Road Map peace initiative through confidence-building and increasing Palestinian capacity in all aspects of border control. Effective border management will facilitate the movement of goods and persons in and out of the Gaza Strip, thus improving the living conditions of the Palestinians and enhancing the prospects of viability of a Palestinian State, while contributing to the security of Israel.
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