Moussa al-Massri was the first Swede to leave Gaza Thursday

Swedes Evacuated from Gaza

More than half the Swedes stranded in Gaza have reached the border, in a six bus convoy with the International Red Cross.

Altogether around 250 of the more than 600 foreigners in Gaza are being evacuated to the border crossing at Erez, including 17 Swedes. They were greeted by diplomats from their countries and most were then escorted away to be taken onwards to Jordan where they were to board flights home.

Another 13-15 Swedes are in southern Gaza and were unable to reach the assembly point. They may be taken out via the border crossing at Rafah.

EU External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner said the evacuation ”is expected to continue for a few more days depending on conditions in particular with regard to potential evacuees in the southern part of Gaza.”

A Swedish diplomat said the consulate general in Jerusalem had been unable to contact two people on a list of 14 Swedish passport-holders still in Gaza.

”The others we have managed to stay in contact with, though even the mobile phone network is becoming very difficult now.”

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