Monday, July 2, 2007

Gaza is Safer Now—At Least this is What Many Gazans Believe for the Moment

From: Rafah Today

"The latest bloodiest weeks in Gaza, leaving hundreds injured and killed, concluded with the Hamas overthrow of Fateh and take-over of the Gaza Strip, including its security compounds. Accordingly, in the opinion of many Gazans, this has stabilized the situation and rendered Gaza “much safer.” A Gaza City university student, 25, on his way home from university related: “Gaza is more secure now. Journalists are arriving from all over the world, and we are all now free to walk in the streets without being shot at.”

Gaza’s beach abounds with people who’ve come to enjoy their time on the beach, to find a moment of peaceful respite and forget temporarily about the daily attacks and devastating experiences they have had in the past few weeks with the internal fighting between groups from Hamas and Fateh......."

Also, this is a must read:

Shell-shocked in the Strip: Israeli Attacks and Border Closures Exacerbate Daily Suffering

"At the Rafah border, in limbo and unable to make it home, Palestinians are suffering from another aspect of the Israeli government’s policy of imposed collective suffering through border closures, economic sanctions, air and land attacks, and extreme military control of Palestinian areas. These latest closures will achieve neither the peace nor security Israel professes to desire. Nonetheless, Israel continues the inhumane policy of denying Palestinians access to medical care, food, and supplies outside of Gaza, and continues to hold hostage the many Palestinians who have been waiting for over three weeks now to return home. At the Rafah border they wait, sleep, and live in the streets, most having allotted only money and food for a few days’ wait, at worst. Thus, weeks later, they’ve run out of money, and have no water for showering, nor food for their children. Today, a Palesinian woman, Taghreed Abeaed 31 years old died while she was waiting in very bad conditions at Rafah border. Taghreed is the mother of fice children was in trip to Egypt and now he body is not beling allowed into Gaza for buring!

"I haven’t been able to find water to bathe with for several weeks now," said 49 year old Umm Rami, stuck on the Egyptian side. She is trying to return home after having knee surgery, now unexpectedly stuck without water or medicine. "I have no idea where to go; I’m alone here with my young daughter, without anything—we’ve run out of everything we need: food, water, money. We are unwashed and stink, besides being hungry and exhausted."......"

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