Tuesday, July 29, 2008

UN report: At 45%, Gaza unemployment is highest in the world

From Ha'aretz:
The unemployment rate in the Gaza Strip now stands at 45 percent, higher than anywhere else in the world, according to a report released recently by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration.

Nearly 95 percent of all factories operating in Gaza have been closed down in recent years, says the report. Israel's year long economic blockade on the coastal territory and repeated closure of electricity and fuel sources have also contributed to the humanitarian crisis.

According to a separate report published by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the unemployment rate in the West Bank reached 25 percent between July and December 2007 - double the average rate in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Shades of Checkpoint Charlie at Rafah Crossing: Professor Writes About Trying to Leave Gaza

EI published the following story in their Diaries section:
On Monday 30 June, Gaza was abuzz with the sudden announcement that Egypt would open Rafah Crossing -- the only gateway for 1.5 million Palestinians who have been imprisoned here for almost two years -- for three short days. Although I had good reasons to use the crossing to leave Gaza, I was unsure about pressing my luck to escape, if only for a short while. Past experience has made me graphically and painfully aware that thousands of my fellow Gazans would also try to capitalize on this very rare opportunity suddenly available to us.

Read the full story here >