Around 7 A.M. on September 12, 2005, Israel
Defense Forces soldiers locked
a gate at the Kissufim crossing between Israel and
Strip after the last Israeli
soldiers left the area, thereby ending
38 years of Israeli military presence.
“From now on, the Palestinian
Authority bears responsibility
for what happens in the Gaza
Strip,” said Gaza commander
Brigadier General Aviv Kochavi, the last
Israeli soldier to leave Gaza.
Two soldiers wearing their Givati Brigade purple berets locked a gate
at the border and Kochavi shook their hands.
A number of soldiers then raised the Israeli flag removed
from the IDF military headquarters inside Gaza, on the
Israeli side of the border.
Palestinian Authority forces, meanwhile,
took control of the areas cleared by the
Israelis. Palestinian officers entered
what was once the largest settlement, Neveh
Dekalim, where IDF forces had left their
headquarters behind for Palestinian use and raised a Palestinian flag
at the site.