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Humanitarian conditions in Gaza still on the decline

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John Ging, the UNRWA operations manager in the Gaza Strip, on Wednesday warned that the humanitarian conditions were still on the decline in the Strip due to the continued Israeli ban on entry of enough goods in spite of the calm agreement.

Ging told a press conference in Gaza city that the conditions in Gaza were difficult and deteriorating, adding that the Gaza inhabitants were suffering from acute shortage in basic life needs.

He said that the Israeli partial opening of the crossings allowed entry of only 25% of what used to access the Strip more than a year ago before the siege was tightened in mid June 2007.

The international official asked all parties concerned to open all Gaza crossings especially the Rafah border terminal, which he said should be opened before the patients, students and stranded citizens. He also demanded an increase in the amount of fuel and goods in a bid to accelerate the reconstruction and development plans that came to a complete standstill months ago.

He said that the cement quantities allowed by Israel were not enough for the construction demands, noting that tens of UNRWA projects whether schools, houses or service centers for the refugees were all completely paralyzed.

Ging, furthermore, condemned the Israeli targeting of Palestinian fishermen at sea and preventing them from fishing in the area allowed in the Oslo agreement or international rules and norms.

He said that his Agency decided to distribute 6.5 million dollars to around 92,000 Palestinian refugees in the Gaza Strip because the conditions have become “unbearable”.