Israel's continued closure of Gaza' sole trade crossing is a form of collective punishment and is exacerbating the human and economic suffering of residents in the Strip, the Popular Committee Against the Siege (PCAGS) said today.
The Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing, which is the economic lifeline of Gaza, has now been closed for 33 days, reducing the work of the main power plant, and aggravating the fuel crisis in the enclave.
Approximately 4,000 trucks have been banned from entry, they were carrying goods and basic necessities which are now piled in ports and warehouses at a great cost to their owners, PCAGS explained.
Some businesses have been forced to close as they lack the materials to operate, increasing the unemployment rate, which has now reached nearly 65 per cent.
The import of relief materials, international aid and foodstuffs have also suffered as a result of the closure.
Rights groups have said Israel is using the closure as a means of blackmailing Palestinian factions to agree to its terms in the post truce talks.
The occupation state carried out an air raids campaign across Gaza in May which lasted 11 days and killed 254 people, including 66 children.