By Heba Afify
At a sit-in by the Ministry of Defense in East Cairo in June 2013, an Egyptian protester held a sign that read, “Palestinians equal Israel for us.”
Protesters were demanding that Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi end Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi’s presidency, which he did on July 3. Since then, Palestinians in Egypt have cited growing hatred towards them.
Between 2011 and 2013, Palestinians experienced some respite from the restrictions placed on their freedoms. For example, the Rafah border crossing was opened more frequently after years of closure, and those born to Egyptian mothers were able to obtain citizenship more easily. Around 24,000 Palestinians were given Egyptian citizenship since 2011, according to the Passports, Immigration and Nationality division at the Ministry of Interior, and many were able to renewal their residency permits after years of deprivation from basic rights.