A Palestinian woman prepares food for her children at her home in a poverty-stricken quarter of al-Zaytoon in Gaza City on 17 September 2013
Head of Popular Committee Against the Siege on Gaza, MP Jamal Al-Khodari, announced on Friday that there are up to 250,000 unemployed workers in Gaza, owing to the Israeli siege imposed on the coastal enclave.
In a statement sent to journalists, Al-Khodari disclosed that only 20 per cent of the factories and economic facilities are operational in Gaza.
Al-Khodari revealed that the 13-year-old “strict” Israeli siege imposed on Gaza “includes all sectors and has paralysed 80 per cent of the workforce.”
Commenting on the aid programmes offered by international bodies, including the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), he acknowledged that they lack “realistic” and “effective” solutions for the consequences of the Israeli siege.
“We are at the door of 2020, the year when many international bodies have warned that Gaza would become uninhabitable,” he explained, stressing that there are “no signs of hope for a better future.”
He stated that the main issues rendering Gaza uninhabitable are the lack of work opportunities, the deficiency of proper medical equipment and the severe shortage of medicines, clean water and electricity.
Concluding his statement, Al-Khodari called for all the Arab, Islamic and international bodies to “urgently” work to save Gaza and to “stop the deterioration of the humanitarian situation,” stressing that the Israeli siege is opposed by the Fourth Geneva Convention.