Israel had closed the crossing on 3 May ahead of Israel's national memorial and independence days, and amid Palestinian violence in the occupied West Bank, although the Gaza front was quiet.

Israel and Hamas, the militant rulers of the impoverished coastal enclave, have fought repeatedly over the last 15 years, most recently in May last year.

Israeli authorities feared tensions and violence in and around Jerusalem during April, when Muslims observed the holy fasting month of Ramadan, would bring another conflict with Gaza, but that did not happen.

A recent World Bank report put the unemployment rate in Gaza, a Palestinian territory of some 2.3 million people, at nearly 48 per cent, with work in Israel a vital lifeline to the enclave's economy.

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