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Poverty and unemployment rates in Gaza at almost 75%

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According to the Ministry of Social Development, Gaza has one of the highest levels of poverty in the world, despite the help from the little humanitarian aid allowed inside the strip.

In a new report by the Ministry of Social Development in the Gaza Strip, the rates of poverty and unemployment has reached almost 75% in 2019 alone. With 70% of the population under the category of suffering under food insecurities, the Israeli occupation and seize of Gaza is creating massive problems of poverty and unemployment, all while heavily abusing the basic human rights of Palestinians.

The Ministry emphasized that Israel’s 13 year long seize of Gaza has created inhumane living conditions within the strip, stating that:

[The poverty rates] are the highest in the world, and…efforts by governmental, international and local institutions are predominantly categorised as relief activities, meeting only about 50 percent of the basic needs of poor families.”

In addition to these astonishing numbers, it has also been revealed that up to 34% of Palestinians inside the Gaza Strip are living in “abject poverty”, as described by the Deputy Welfare Minister Ghazi Hamad. Without access to clean water, basic food supplies, and sanitary living conditions, many in Gaza are subject to an increasing level of severe poverty because of the Israeli occupation. Hamad stated:

Large numbers of Gaza residents are forced to borrow money to buy food and water due to income shortages and lack of clean tap water.”

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According to the Ministry of Social Development, Gaza has one of the highest levels of poverty in the world, despite the help from the little humanitarian aid allowed inside the strip. With severe Israeli block-aids of humanitarian aid coming into Gaza, the Ministry has stated that only 50% of the basic needs of poverty-stricken families are met.

Israel’s continued occupation of the Gaza Strip, now in its 13th year, is almost solely attributable for the horrendous percentage of those in poverty and suffering from unemployment in Gaza. In an effort to help raise awareness and ease the movement of humanitarian aid, the ministry called for “guaranteeing humanitarian work independence away from political tensions”, and to allow for the “opening [of] border crossings and allowing citizens and gods to move freely”.

As 2019 draws to a close, it remains to be seen whether any change will be implemented to help curb the rising percentage of Palestinians in Gaza suffering from poverty, as Israel continues to move with impunity in its disregard for Palestinian lives and safety.

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