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Israeli NGO slams tightened Gaza blockade as ‘immoral and illegal’

July 12, 2018 at 1:37 pm

Charities are locked out of Gaza due to the siege [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

An Israeli human rights organisation has slammed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government’s decision to tighten the blockade of the occupied Gaza Strip as “immoral and illegal”.

In a statement published yesterday, Gisha described the closure of the Kerem Shalom crossing as “a sweeping measure of collective punishment that calls to mind past days of outright economic warfare on Gaza’s civilian population”.

Kerem Shalom, Karam Abu Salem,  is the main commercial crossing for the occupied Gaza Strip, and, as of Monday, Israel has placed “severe restrictions on the entry of goods” while “the exit of goods from Gaza destined for the West Bank, Israel or abroad has been banned altogether”.

According to Gisha, “under the renewed restrictions on movement of goods, only items Israel deems ‘humanitarian’ will be allowed to enter Gaza; mainly fuel, food, some medical equipment and medicine, livestock and animal feed.”

Read: UN concerned about new Israeli restrictions on Gaza

“All other goods are now forbidden from entering, including items such as construction materials, clothing, blankets, mattresses, water pumps, spare parts, generators and more,” Gisha added.

The NGO said that Israel appears to be “once again attempting to limit supplies to Gaza to a humanitarian minimum, as it did during the harshest periods of the closure”, a policy decision that is “immoral and illegal”.