Lift Gaza Blockade for the 'Humanitarian Sense of All': UN

In the name of the “humanitarian sense of all,” Israel and Egypt must lift border restrictions on the Gaza Strip, said outgoing head of the United Nations Relief and Works Organization (UNRWA) Filippo Grandi on Tuesday.

While Egypt and Israel often site “security concerns” in reference to the strict trade blockade on Gaza’s borders, Grandi said, “the world should not forget about the security of the people of Gaza. Their security is worth the same as everybody else’s security so we appeal to the humanitarian sense of all.”

As both import and export out of the occupied territory are tightly restricted, goods coming in through the single commercial border crossing with Israel meet only 35 to 50 percent of Gazans’ needs, as Reuters reports.

The import blockade is “illegal and must be lifted,” said Grandi, adding, “I also want to make a strong appeal for export to resume because the lack of export is the main reason for the poverty of Gaza.”