Blockade of the Gaza Strip


Blockade of the Gaza Strip

The Blockade of the Gaza Strip refers to the blockade Israel imposed, beginning in June 2007, on the Hamas governed Gaza Strip (a region of the Palestinian territories.)

Timeline

Initiation

Following the Hamas takeover of the Gaza Strip, Israel sealed its border crossing with Gaza, on the grounds that Fatah was no longer providing security, and imposed a blockade on the territory, prohibiting all exports and allowing only enough goods to avert a humanitarian or health crisis. [cite news|title=Abbas’s Premier Tells Israel to Reopen Gaza|publisher=New York Times|author=Isabel Kershner|date=2007-12-14|url=http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/14/world/middleeast/14mideast.html]

Breach of the Gaza-Egypt border

The breach of the Gaza-Egypt border began on January 23, 2008, after gunmen in the Gaza Strip set off an explosion near the Rafah Border Crossing, destroying part of the former Israeli Gaza Strip barrier. The United Nations estimates that as many as half the 1.5 million population of the Gaza Strip crossed the border into Egypt seeking food and supplies.cite news |url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7208252.stm |title=Gazans make new border wall hole: Palestinians have bulldozed down part of the Gaza-Egypt border wall again, hours after Egyptian troops blocked holes recently made by militants|work=BBC News |date=2008-01-25 ]

Attempt at easing restrictions

A ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas in June 2008 was supposed to lead to the easing of restrictions, however progress has been slow and by August very few goods have been allowed in. [cite news|title=Truce barely eases Gaza embargo|publisher=BBC|author=Aleem Maqbool|date=2008-8-19|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7570605.stm]

Criticism

The United Nations Human Rights Council condemned Israel for the 15th time in less than two years on January 24, calling the blockade of the Gaza Strip collective punishment.cite news | url = http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?c=JPArticle&cid=1201070783680&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull | title = UNHRC slams Israel's actions in Gaza | work = The Jerusalem Post | date=2008-01-25 ] However, the proceedings were boycotted by Israel and the United States.

On March 7, 2008, several international aid groups, including Amnesty International, CARE International UK, and Oxfam, issued a report saying that the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip was more acute than at any time since the beginning of the Israeli occupation in 1967. They urged Israel to lift the blockade, characterizing it as collective punishment against the 1.5 million residents of the territory. [cite news|title=Human crisis in Gaza 'is worst for 40 years'|publisher=Daily Telegraph|author=Tim Butcher|date=2008-03-07|url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/03/06/wgaza106.xml]

ee also

* Battle of Gaza (2007)
* Breach of the Gaza-Egypt border
* 2006-2007 economic sanctions against the Palestinian National Authority

References

External links

* [http://www.unhchr.ch/huricane/huricane.nsf/view01/0478C20910151B14C12571940058247A?opendocument Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories]


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