Thursday, July 15, 2021

  • Thursday, July 15, 2021
  • Elder of Ziyon

The European Union Border  Assistance Mission for the Rafah Crossing began working in January 2006 to be a third party observer on people crossing the border between Egypt and Gaza, under Palestinian Authority control and with Israel watching remotely to ensure security.

Hamas took over Gaza in 2007, and after being there for less than 18 months, EUBAM-Rafah no longer had any reason to exist.

It still exists, waiting and hoping for the PA to take over Gaza and turn the clock back to 2006. In its own words, for 14 years "it  has  maintained  its readiness  to  redeploy  to  the  RCP (Rafah Crossing Point)  including  launching  a Preparedness  Project,  designed  to  enhance  the  Palestinian Authority’s  capacity  and  readiness  to  return  to  the  RCP."

There are 18 people working there, doing virtually nothing while living in Tel Aviv and drawing salaries.

Its mandate gets renewed every year. 

Its annual budget is  €2,040,000.

Occasionally EUBAM-Rafah members give training to the PA. Last month, they gave a seminar on how to use X-Ray machines for goods. That was the first training this year; in January 2020 they gave a one day seminar on how to deal with disabled travelers. They've been doing that since 2014.

Sometimes they donate equipment, or host some mid-level official from Europe. That's about all they do.

Everything they are doing can be done by existing EU groups in the territories

Even though it only took five weeks to create and staff EUBAM-Rafah in 2005, for some reason the EU thinks it is more efficient to keep them around just in case there is a sudden reason for them to go back to observe people at the Hamas controlled Rafah crossing.








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