Alwaght-The United Nations warns that the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip is “catastrophic” due to a decade-long “economic siege” imposed by Israeli regime on the densely-populated Palestinian coastal enclave.
“The situation in Gaza is becoming less and less livable,” Isabelle Durant, the deputy head of the United Nations development agency (UNCTAD) said on Wednesday.
The UN agency said in an annual report that unemployment in the occupied Palestinian territories rose to more than 27 percent overall in 2017, the world’s highest, while around 44 percent in Gaza alone.
It noted that the adverse conditions imposed by the Israeli regime disproportionately affected women and young people, saying that half of Palestinians under the age of 30 are out of work.
The report said that the widespread Israeli restrictions on the movement of people and goods, confiscation of land and natural resources, and the accelerating expansion of settlements were also damaging.
The UNCTAD said that removing restrictions on the besieged territory was particularly important, warning that the strip had been “reduced to a humanitarian case of profound suffering and aid dependency.”
Lifting some of the Israeli restrictions on Palestinian trade and investment could allow the territory's gross economy to swell by up to 10 percent, the UN agency said.
The UN agency further said that a sharp drop in international support to the Palestinians, “a freeze in the reconstruction of Gaza and unsustainable credit-financed public and private consumption paint a bleak picture for future growth.”
The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli blockade since June 2007. Years of blockade, three major invasions and daily airstrikes against critical infrastructure have caused a decline in the standard of living as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.
The Israeli regime has also launched Israel several wars on the Palestinian sliver, the last of which began in early July 2014 and ended in late August the same year. The Israeli military aggression killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians and injured over 11,100 others. Additionally, the Israeli regime continue to conduct illegal military operations targeting innocent Palestinians in Gaza.