Rafah, on the border of Egypt, is the only way out of Gaza after Israel closed its crossings

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Israel - Hamas Conflict


The border to Egypt most likely remained closed because of concerns of mass exodus from Gaza by anguished refugees, said H.A. Hellyer, a senior associate fellow specializing in security and geopolitics at the Royal United Services Institute, a London-based think tank. Historical precedent shows Palestinian refugees who flee are unlikely to be able to return, he said. “It’s extremely understandable, [which is] why the Egyptians and why a lot of the neighboring states are very reluctant to say, ‘Yeah, sure, we’ll take them in,’” Hellyer said. “Because they know that they’ll never be able to go back.”