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Gaza economic losses exceeded $300m in 2018

December 31, 2018 at 11:10 am

Palestinians, employed by the Palestinian Authority, withdraw money from an ATM, outside a Bank in Gaza on 10 May 2017 [Mohammed Asad/Apaimages]

Gaza’s economic losses exceeded $300 million in 2018 as a result of Israel’s stifling siege on the Strip, head of the Popular Committee Against the Siege Jamal Al-Khodari said yesterday.

In a statement, a copy of which sent to MEMO, Al-Khodari described 2018 as “the most disastrous year” for Gaza since it was occupied by the Israeli occupation in 1967.

“Gaza experiences unprecedented disastrous economic situation […] due to the 12-year strict Israeli siege and the three destructive Israeli offensives,” Al-Khodari said in the statement.

“The continuous and systematic Israeli siege aimed to hurt the national economy,” he said.

According to Al-Khodari, the Israeli occupation is still banning hundreds of basic commodities from entering Gaza, causing up to 90 per cent of Gaza’s factories to stop working.

He stated that there are around 300,000 unemployed workers in Gaza, in addition to tens of thousands of unemployed university graduates. “The unemployment rate in Gaza is over 65 per cent,” he said.

“Income of more than 85 per cent of Gaza residents has declined to less than $2 a day,” he said in the statement.

He called for the international bodies and the international community to put pressure on the Israeli occupation in order to meet its obligations under the Geneva Convention and the Global Declaration of Human Rights, which criminalise the siege and collective punishment.

Gaza: Hamas facing severe financial crisis