'Rebuilding Gaza could take a century if Israel keeps blockade'

By REUTERS
February 26, 2015 18:06

LONDON - The rebuilding of homes, schools and hospitals in Gaza could take more than a century to complete unless an Israeli blockade restricting imports of construction materials into the Gaza Strip is lifted, aid agency Oxfam said on Thursday.

Gaza needs more than 800,000 truckloads of building materials to repair infrastructure damaged in the 2014 war with Israel, yet less than a quarter of one percent of the materials needed have entered Gaza in the last three months, Oxfam said.

Fifty days of conflict in Gaza between Hamas and Israeli forces in July and August last year killed more than 2,100 Palestinians and 73 Israelis, and left swathes of ruins in the Mediterranean enclave of 1.8 million Palestinians.

Israel imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip after the Islamist movement Hamas won power there in elections in 2006, and both Egypt and Israel maintain tight controls on the movement of goods and people in and out of the territory.


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