A Palestinian man sits atop the rubble of a house which was destroyed by Israeli troops during an Israeli raid in the West Bank city of Jenin September 1, 2015. At least five Palestinians were wounded during an Israeli raid in the occupied West Bank late on Monday. (REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman)
Three Israeli military operations in the past six years, in addition to eight years of economic blockade, have ravaged the already debilitated infrastructure of Gaza, shattered its productive base, left no time for meaningful reconstruction or economic recovery and impoverished the Palestinian population in Gaza, rendering their economic well-being worse than the level of two decades previous. The most recent military operation compounded already dire socioeconomic conditions and accelerated de-development in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, a process by which development is not merely hindered but reversed.
The social, health and security-related ramifications of the high population density and overcrowding are among the factors that may render Gaza unliveable by 2020, if present trends continue.
“I like to experiment with sounds, so I created my own musical instrument out of a piece of wood, nails, strings and a soda can. My audience consists of my little siblings who sit in front of me while I try to make some rhythm. I like it when they clap after I finish. When I grow up I want to become a musician and a singer.” Source: Unicef State of Palestine.
“SodaStream said it employed up to 600 Palestinians at the West Bank factory and sought to transfer their jobs to the Israeli plant. But Birnbaum said Israel had granted only 130 work permits so far due to security issues and many likely would lose their jobs.
Ali Jafar, a shift manager from a West Bank village who has worked for SodaStream for two years, said: “All the people who wanted to close [SodaStream’s West Bank factory] are mistaken. … They didn’t take into consideration the families.”
“SodaStream should have been encouraged in the West Bank if [the BDS movement] truly cared about the Palestinian people,” Birnbaum said.
Palestinians, like other employees, are offered a bus service that brings them to the factory but that will now become a two-hour journey each way that involves crossing an Israeli checkpoint, where workers must show permits and be screened for security checks.”
Hundreds of Muslim and Christian Palestinians protested Sunday morning in the West Bank town of Beit Jala against the future establishment of the separation wall that would cut them off from Jerusalem.
Israel is considering giving its security forces a freer hand to shoot at young Palestinian stone-throwers, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said on Wednesday.
Under standing orders, Israeli soldiers facing violent Palestinian protests can open fire with live bullets only in life-threatening situations. That effectively bans firing at Palestinians who flee after hurling a rock or petrol bomb.
But after meeting with several cabinet ministers and security chiefs to discuss an increase in stone-throwing in Jerusalem and on a highway in the occupied West Bank, Netanyahu suggested the rules could be hardened.
“Since the justice system finds it difficult to deal with minors who throw rocks, changes to orders on opening fire towards stone- and petrol bomb-throwers will be examined,” the prime minister’s office said in a statement.