The United Nations has brokered a Palestinian-Israeli deal to enable the importing of construction materials to Gaza to ensure they will only be used for reconstruction, a UN envoy said yesterday.
The agreement on monitoring the supply of materials "must get up and running without delay", Robert Serry, the UN envoy for the Middle East, said in a statement.
The recent 51-day Israeli war on the Gaza Strip resulted in massive damage to residential areas along the Strip.
Palestinians have called for building materials to be allowed into the Strip, and this was agreed upon in the ceasefire deal reached in Cairo on August 26 that ended the war. However, Israel has so far refused to allow construction materials and most other imports.
Earlier yesterday, Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Ya'alon outlined some of the concessions Israel granted the Palestinians as part of the ceasefire deal, including the passage of construction material into Gaza.
"Building materials and reconstruction equipment will enter the Gaza Strip through a mechanism that Coordinator of the Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) Major General Yoav Mordechai is building, together the with UN envoy Robert Serry and the Palestinian Authority," Ya'alon added.
He warned that "if those materials are transferred to building tunnels – the transfer will stop immediately."