UNRWA: Situation in Gaza Moving from ‘Bad to Worse’

Food aid distributed by the UN Palestinian refugees agency, UNRWA in the besieged Gaza Strip. (Photo: Social Media)

Director of UNRWA’s operations in Gaza Matthias Schmale yesterday warned that the situation in the besieged Gaza Strip “is moving from bad to worse”, the Anadolu Agency reported.

Schmale told a meeting organized by Press House in Gaza:

“The social and economic situation in Gaza is moving from bad to worse.” 

The UN official blamed the 12-year-old Israeli blockade on Gaza for the deteriorating situation in the Palestinian territory, which is home to nearly two million people.

Schmale said:

“It has caused higher unemployment rates, economic collapse and restriction of free trade.” 

According to the Palestinian Centre of Bureau of Statistics, unemployment in Gaza continues to rise, reaching 52 percent in 2018, an increase of almost eight percent since 2017 and of more than 20 percent since Israel imposed the closure in 2007.

A recent report for the UN World Food Programme (WFP) found that food insecurity affected two-thirds of the population in Gaza.

Israel imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip in 2007 after Palestinian group Hamas seized control of the strip from its rival group Fatah, ending more than a year of security chaos erupted by Fatah’s rejection to recognize Hamas’ victory in the elections.

Established in 1949, UNRWA delivers critical aid to Palestinian refugees in the Gaza Strip, the Israeli-occupied West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria.

(Middle East Monitor, PC, Social Media)

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