Don't miss the inspiring speeches at The Jerusalem Post Conference
Aid groups, UN bodies urge end to Gaza blockade
ByREUTERS
June 14, 2012 12:31
Signatories on joint appeal, including Amnesty Int'l, WHO, claim blockade is violation of international law.
A Palestinian transports goods in a tunnel.

Gaza tunnel smuggling palestinian 311. (photo credit:Ibraheem Abu Mustafa / Reuters)

Fifty international aid groups and United Nations agencies issued a joint appeal on Thursday calling on Israel to lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip, which is ruled by Hamas.

"For over five years in Gaza, more than 1.6 million people have been under blockade in violation of international law. More than half of these people are children. We the undersigned say with one voice: 'end the blockade now,'" the petition said.



Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.



Amongst the signatories were Amnesty International, Save the Children, the World Health Organization, Oxfam, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and five other UN bodies.

Israel imposed restrictions on trade to Gaza in 2001 following the outbreak of the second intifada and tightened them further in 2007 after Hamas seized power in the coastal enclave adjacent to Egypt, which also enforces a blockade.


It has relaxed them over the past two years in the face of heavy international pressure, but insists on checking all goods entering the territory to prevent arms, or weapons-making equipment, from reaching Hamas.

"All cargo going into Gaza must be checked because Gaza is controlled by Hamas, an internationally recognized terrorist organization," said Mark Regev, spokesman for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

"Just this morning an Israeli farmer who was ploughing his field was shot at from Gaza. Is it really fair to expect Israel to remove the restriction on military use items while the regime in Gaza is as hostile and aggressive as it is to Israel?"

Hamas's founding charter calls for the destruction of Israel, but its leadership has raised the possibility of entering into a prolonged truce with Israel after years of bloodshed.
Relevant to your professional network? Please share on Linkedin

Tags:
  • amnesty international
  • from around the web
    Share this article via
    Related Content
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
    August 31, 2014
    Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

    By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN

    Top Stories
    Israel Weather
    • 13 - 26
      Beer Sheva
      15 - 22
      Tel Aviv - Yafo
    • 11 - 20
      Jerusalem
      14 - 20
      Haifa
    • 18 - 30
      Elat
      15 - 26
      Tiberias