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Has Gaza’s Blockade been eased?

June 2010

Safa Joudeh, formerly Grassroots International’s consultant, who lives there, doesn’t think so. In her Al Jazeera op-ed, Safa explains the emotional and socio-economic trauma and stress of living under lockdown.

The Israeli government, facing increased international condemnation in the wake of last month’s attack on the Freedom Flotilla, announced earlier that they would make “adjustments” in their land blockade—while keeping their sea blockade intact. Essentially, this means moving from a policy of maintaining a list of items allowed into the Gaza Strip to a policy of holding a manifest of only those items that are not allowed through the border. As yet, no one seems to know what is actually on this list.

Some Palestinians have criticized this measure as a move that will mislead the public into believing that the blockade has been lifted. On the other side, some Israelis hope that it will repair some of the recent damage done to their international reputation and bring them back in step with old allies.

Whatever the case may be, more must be done by both Israel and the international community including lifting the illegal blockade to give the people of Gaza a real shot at a future with dignity and self-determination.

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