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Most items allowed into Gaza by Israel "are food and consumer goods"

A special report published on 18th August has warned that the goods now being allowed into Gaza by the Israeli authorities are mostly limited to food and consumer items. Data provided by the border crossings' follow-up project implemented by the Palestinian Trade Centre – Paltrade – and funded by the World Bank, showed that 48% of goods crossing through Gaza borders from Israel is currently foodstuffs. The report adds that the breakdown of the remaining 52% of goods is 14% humanitarian aid, 4% raw materials and 14% animal feeds, with the rest made up of household equipment and electrical fittings.

No building materials at all are being allowed in by the Israeli authorities. This contrasts sharply with the situation before the Israeli-imposed siege on Gaza, when such materials made up 52% of imports; the rest were animal feeds (3%), food (7%), humanitarian aid (3% and raw materials (13%), plus consumer goods such as electrical items.

The number of trucks using the main commercial crossings into Gaza from Israel over the past two weeks was 2,259. Prior to the siege, an average of 2,807 trucks per week crossed into Gaza, much higher than the current average of 1,130 vehicles. The current volume of goods entering Gaza is 40% of the pre-blockade figure.

Israel has imposed a tight siege on the Gaza Strip, home to a million and a half people, since June 2007. It has "eased" the blockade in response to international condemnation of its murderous assault on the flotilla of ships trying to take humanitarian aid to the territory in May.

Middle EastNews
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