Photo Credit: Leonardo d'Ottavi via Flickr
Life in the Gaza Strip

A group called The Popular Committee Against the Siege, located in the Gaza Strip, last week issued a report the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, concurrent with the reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. According to the report, the humanitarian situation of the Gaza Strip after more than ten years of an Israeli blockade by land, sea and air, three wars with Israel, in 2008, 2012, and the effects of the ongoing conflict between the PLO and Hamas, have led to a catastrophic situation – as evidenced by the recent UN warnings that by 2020 life in Gaza would become impossible.

The report claims that during the decade of the blockade there has been an increase of half a million civilians in Gaza, without any improvement in services. Instead, poverty, unemployment and the decline in purchasing power have increased dramatically:


80% of the population is below the poverty line.

50% unemployment rate.

60% unemployment rate among youth and young adults.

The average income is down to $2 a day per person.

40% of the children suffer from malnutrition and anemia.

There are 15,500 orphans living in Gaza, who suffer from poor living conditions.

50,000 residents suffer from disabilities, from birth or from war injuries.

30% of the needed medicine is unavailable.

45% of medical consumables are unavailable.

13,000 cancer patients go without medical infusions.

Thousands of civilians, especially the poor, are chronically ill.

95% of the water is not drinkable.

50 million cubic meters per year capacity of

The underground water reservoir needs an estimated investment of $250 million to preserve its capacity of 50 million cubic meters.

150 thousand cubic meters of daily pumped water is dumped unused into the environment (land and sea) due to the electricity crisis. Electricity shortages have a major impact on the lack of access to water for civilian homes.

80% of the factories are closed in whole or in part.

Severe lack of production capacity and export due to electricity crisis. The ratio of exports to imports was 0.62 to 100.

$250 million in direct and indirect annual losses.

40% of the houses completely destroyed in the summer of 2014 have not yet been rebuilt. 5,500 homes are not habitable.

Thousands of families still live in unfit rental homes.

40 destroyed mosques are yet to be rebuilt.

Daily power outages of 12-20 hours.

The power deficit is 270 MW.

Twenty-nine people, including 23 children, have perished since 2010 in accidents involving using candles and other unsafe lighting.

Electricity crisis affects the allocation of water for irrigation at the rate of 50-60%

The electricity crisis affects the irrigation for agriculture, with a negative impact on the quality of crops, and an increase in the cost of food production.

It should be noted that the report prefers to blame Israel for much of the situation, absolving Hamas of usurping fishing and border crossing for the smuggling of weapons and construction material for building terror tunnels. It also speaks about the lack of electricity without pointing a finger at Mahmoud Abbas, whose AP was behind cutting electric service to the Strip.


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