(pic: Construction materials are in short supply in the Gaza Strip after Israel banned them for four years, fearing Hamas would use them to build military bunkers (Lo Yuk Fai, PNN)
On Tuesday, Israeli forces opened the Karem Abu Salem crossing in the southern Gaza Strip, admitting nearly 300 trucks loaded with aid and supplies for the industrial, agricultural, and transportation sectors.
Palestinian liaison official Ra’ed Fattouh said that 12 trucks loaded with cement and other construction materials, as well as another 53 trucks full of gravel entered Gaza through the crossing. He said a limited amount of cooking gas would be pumped in as well.
The crossing was open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m, in which 298 trucks were admitted to Gaza: 11 of them carried aid supplies, 183 were designated for the industrial sector, 40 of them carried livestock feed, nine were designated for the agricultural sector, and five for transportation carrying 20 new vehicles. Twenty-two trucks loaded with gravel provided materials for 10 factories ruined in the last war on Gaza and 18 trucks full of cement and iron were provided for construction.
In addition, 50 trucks entered with supplies for UNRWA projects and over 175,000 kilograms (about 192 tons) of cooking gas were pumped to Gaza.
The amount of cooking gas pumped into Gaza, according to Oxfam’s weekly report on Gaza from November 6 – 12, was as high as 330 tons two weeks ago and 637 the week before that. All three figures represent less than a quarter of the 1,750 tons of cooking gas needed per week to avoid a humanitarian crisis in the blockaded territory. more
A solidarity convoy made it into the Gaza Strip, on Monday evening, through the Rafah Border Terminal, between the Gaza Strip and Egypt. Members of the "Freedom Spring" convoy will be holding meetings with political and social figures in Gaza.
Representatives of Arab Spring movement are part of the convoy; convoy members plan to hold a meeting with Ismail Haniyya, Prime Minister of the dissolved Hamas-led government in Gaza, and several Palestinian officials, in addition to holding meetings with Gaza businessmen, representatives of women movements, and representatives of local NGO’s.
The visiting convoy members will be touring refugee camps in Gaza, to observe the dire situation, and also intend to visit the UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East).
The convoy is distinguished by the participation of representatives of the Arab Spring, sweeping across the Arab world demanding justice and change, in addition to parliamentarians from different countries around the world. more