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UN official: Israel must end blockade to allow Gaza reconstruction,

August 10, 2014 at 9:23 am

A senior UN official said that the reconstruction of Gaza requires lifting the Israeli siege, imposed since 2006.

In statements to AFP, spokesperson of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), Chris Gunness, said that humanitarian action alone is not enough: “The blockade must end. We are beyond the realm of humanitarian action alone. All those directly and indirectly responsible for the carnage and destruction must engage,” he said.

He pointed out that the “collective punishment” of civilians in Gaza has been “ineffective”, and that Israeli should pursue a political solution for the Gaza conflict.

He warned that a least 65,000 homes have been destroyed in the current offensive, and that a “man-made homelessness crisis on an epic scale is unfolding”.

Palestinian resistance groups, including Hamas, insist that any viable truce must stipulate an end to the Israeli blockade on Gaza.