Palestinians says Israeli restrictions deny them animals for sacrifice

Israel's closure of its border with the Gaza Strip has caused a shortage of livestock for sacrifice at the annual Eid al-Adha Muslim holiday beginning Wednesday, according to merchants in the coastal territory. Ibrahim al-Kedra, a senior agriculture ministry official in Gaza said the average demand for the feast among Gaza's overwhelmingly Muslim population of 1.5 million is around 10,000 cows and 50,000 goats. At the Eid, Muslims slaughter sheep, goats, cows or camels, sharing the meat with friends and family and donating one third to the poor. Al-Kedra said around 7,700 cows were allowed through by Israel in November and around 1,600 more were set for shipping Monday, but no goats or sheep were permitted, apart from 30 goats and 30 camels donated by Israeli Muslims for the Gaza poor.