According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), agriculture in Palestine is the largest sector of the economy.
“In Gaza, agriculture offers life-saving job opportunities in a region rife with unemployment,” OCHA says, adding that “in the West Bank, where farming has been a way of life since ancient times, agriculture makes up an integral part of cultural identity. It also offers opportunities for stable employment and sustainability.”
Expectedly, the Israeli occupation has a devastating impact on Palestinian agriculture. In its latest report on Israeli Apartheid, published on February 1, Amnesty International highlights that “according to the World Bank, the Palestinian agriculture sector’s productivity has declined because of Israeli restrictions on accessing water and agricultural land”.
Still, despite numerous obstacles, the harvest season in Palestine remains a major event. It is the livelihood of many Palestinian communities; but also a major national and cultural event that serves as a reminder of Palestinian roots in their historic homeland.
In the gallery below, Palestine Chronicle correspondent visited wheat farms in eastern Gaza and shared these photos.
(All Photos: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)