Foreign nationals began exiting the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing into Egypt on Wednesday for the first time since Hamas launched a war against Israel on Oct. 7.
The development comes after Qatar reportedly brokered a U.S.-backed agreement between Israel, Egypt and Hamas.
Seriously wounded Palestinians in Gaza were also expected to be transported via the crossing with Sinai to receive medical treatment in Egypt.
Some 400 foreigners and dual nationals are expected to leave Gaza on Wednesday. About 90 sick and wounded were also being allowed to exit.
Cairo had been hesitant to date to allow foreign nationals entry into the country over fears the move would open the doors to Palestinian refugees.
Jordan and Egypt have made clear that they will not accept any Palestinians from the Gaza Strip, declaring it a “red line.”
U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan revealed on Sunday that Hamas is preventing hundreds of American citizens from leaving the Gaza Strip.
“The challenge right now … is that the Egyptians are prepared to let Americans and other foreign nationals out of Gaza. The Israelis have no issue with that. But Hamas is preventing their departure and making a series of demands,” Sullivan told CBS’s “Face the Nation” program.
Some 500 to 600 U.S. citizens are believed to be stuck in the Hamas-controlled enclave, Washington previously confirmed. Sullivan did not elaborate on the demands the terrorist group was making to permit their departure.