Publications

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13 December 2017 |

Longstanding restrictions on the movement of people and goods to and from Gaza have undermined the living conditions of approximately two million Palestinians in that area. Many of the current restrictions, originally imposed by Israel in the early 1990s, were intensified after June 2007, following the Hamas takeover of Gaza and the imposition of a blockade. These restrictions continue to reduce access to livelihoods, essential services and housing, disrupt family life, and undermine people’s hopes for a secure and prosperous future. The situation has been compounded by the restrictions imposed since June 2013 by the Egyptian authorities at Rafah Crossing, which had become the main crossing point used by Palestinian passengers in the Gaza Strip, given the restrictions on the Israeli-controlled crossings. On 1 November 2017, pursuant to the Palestinian reconciliation agreement reached on 12 October, the Hamas authorities handed over control of the Gaza side of the Erez, Kerem Shalom and Rafah crossings to the Palestinian Authority; a Hamas-run checkpoint that controlled access to the Erez crossing (“Arba’ Arba’”) was dismantled.

8 December 2017 |

Today, the UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities, Robert Piper, released US$ 2.2 million from the occupied Palestinian territory Humanitarian Fund (oPt HF) to cover urgent additional needs in the Gaza Strip in the areas of health and food security.

7 December 2017 |

On 30 November, a 48-year-old male Palestinian farmer was shot and killed by an Israeli settler, who was accompanying a group of settler youths hiking in an agricultural area near Qusra village (Nablus). While Palestinian eyewitnesses reported that the shooting was preceded by a verbal altercation between the settler group and the farmer, the Israeli media reported that the shooter opened fire in response to Palestinian stone throwing. The body of the farmer was withheld for autopsy by the Israeli authorities for two days. Immediately after the killing, residents of Qusra gathered at the site and threw stones at the settlers, who were hiding in a cave and responded with gunfire, resulting in the injury of one Palestinian by live ammunition and two settlers by stones. The Israeli police have opened a criminal investigation into the case.

23 November 2017 |

On 17 November, a 17-year-old Palestinian boy drove his vehicle into Israeli settlers in two separate, but sequenced incidents, first at the Efrata junction and then at Gush Etzion junction (Bethlehem), injuring two Israelis, and was, subsequently, shot and severely injured by Israeli soldiers. In the latter incident, the driver stepped out of the car and attempted to stab a soldier before being shot. The Gush Etzion junction has witnessed 20 Palestinian attacks and alleged attacks since October 2015, resulting in the killing of four Israelis and 12 Palestinians, all but one perpetrators or alleged perpetrators.

22 November 2017 |

Longstanding restrictions on the movement of people and goods to and from Gaza have undermined the living conditions of 1.8 million Palestinians in Gaza. Many of the current restrictions, originally imposed in the early 1990s, were intensified in June 2007, following the Hamas takeover of Gaza and the imposition of a blockade by Israel.

21 November 2017 |

A series of measures implemented by the Palestinian Authority since March 2017, following an escalation in the internal Palestinian divide, have led to a deterioration in the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. Against the backdrop of 10 years of Israel’s land, air and sea blockade, these measures have exacerbated Gaza’s energy crisis, resulting in increasing outages from 12-16 to 18-20 hours a day, worsened the salary crisis in the public sector, increased the shortage of essential drugs from around 33% in March to 45% in October and delayed the referral of patients for medical treatment outside Gaza. These developments have impacted the availability of essential services and the livelihoods of Gaza’s two million residents. The following indicators were identified by the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) to monitor the evolution of the crisis, trigger humanitarian action and prevent further deterioration. Despite an agreement signed in October 2017 between Fatah and Hamas, most of the measures that triggered the recent deterioration have not been reversed.

13 November 2017 |

Longstanding restrictions on the movement of people and goods to and from Gaza have undermined the living conditions of approximately two million Palestinians in that area. Many of the current restrictions, originally imposed by Israel in the early 1990s, were intensified after June 2007, following the Hamas takeover of Gaza and the imposition of a blockade. These restrictions continue to reduce access to livelihoods, essential services and housing, disrupt family life, and undermine people’s hopes for a secure and prosperous future. The situation has been compounded by the restrictions imposed since June 2013 by the Egyptian authorities at Rafah Crossing, which had become the main crossing point used by Palestinian passengers in the Gaza Strip, given the restrictions on the Israeli-controlled crossings.

10 November 2017 |
Mona and two of her seven children, in a poor household affected by electricity and water shortages. Rafah, Gaza Strip, October 2017. © Photo by OXFAM

On 1 November, the Hamas authorities handed over control of the Erez, Kerem Shalom and Rafah crossings to the Palestinian Government of National Consensus. This is the most significant practical step so far towards the implementation of the reconciliation agreement signed by Fatah and Hamas on 12 October 2017, with Egyptian facilitation. The agreement points the way to a possible end to the decade-long internal Palestinian divide and to an improvement in living conditions in the Gaza Strip, including a potential lifting of the Israeli blockade.

10 November 2017 |
Mona and two of her seven children, in a poor household affected by electricity and water shortages. Rafah, Gaza Strip, October 2017. © Photo by OXFAM

The continuation of the electricity crisis and the lack of funding for WASH interventions have rendered 1.45 million people in the Gaza Strip at risk of contracting waterborne, diseases, including as a result of flooding. Despite the evacuation of settlers from privately-owned Palestinian land, which was taken over or officially seized for the establishment or expansion of settlements, the Palestinian owners continue to face severe restrictions in accessing their land. 171 Palestinians in four herding communities in the northern Jordan Valley are at risk of forcible transfer, following the approval of demolitions by the Israeli High Court of Justice. Despite the positive developments regarding the Fatah and Hamas reconciliation agreement, it has not led, so far, to the reversal of the measures that triggered the latest deterioration in the humanitarian situation in Gaza.

10 November 2017 |
Mona filling a bottle of non-potable water from a tank in her yard. © Photo by OXFAM

Ongoing electricity outages of 18-20 hours a day across the Gaza Strip throughout September and October continue to undermine the provision of basic services. In the water, sanitation and hygiene sector (WASH), sustained efforts by humanitarian agencies to provide 154 critical facilities with emergency fuel to run backup generators resulted in a limited improvement in some key indicators during September compared with previous months. There was a modest increase in the quantity of piped water supplied to households and in the functioning of desalination plants, plus a slight decline in the contamination levels of sewage discharged to the sea. Nevertheless, September indicators remain well below the already poor standards recorded during the first quarter of 2017.