Gaza's ministry of agriculture celebrated on Thursday the beginning of the olive harvest season for this year.
Minister Ali Al-Tarshawi and staff from the agriculture ministry attended the celebration, which took place at an olive farm in Khan Younis City, in the south of the Gaza Strip.
Al-Tarshawi expressed his happiness with the start of the harvest season and announced that the Gaza Strip is expected to produce around 10,000 tons of olives this season.
However, he explained that this amount is far less than the amount produced in the previous year. He said that his ministry is planning to import olives from the occupied West Bank to meet the remaining demand of the Gaza Strip.
Meanwhile, he announced that his ministry is working on expanding the Gaza Strip's olive harvesting lands in the coming years to reach 36,450 dunams.
He said that the Gaza Strip used to produce huge amounts of olives and citrus products, but because of Israel's aggression against the agricultural areas in Gaza during the Al-Aqsa Intifada, this produce has sharply decreased.
Photos by Mohammed Asad