Julie Webb-Pullman reports

Snow adds to Gaza’s woes

Gaza under snow (Photo: Maysam Yusef)

Gaza under snow (Photo: Maysam Yusef)

Snow is falling in Gaza, adding another layer of misery to the freezing and flooded conditions being experienced by its besieged population. Most homes have been without electricity for 24 of the last 36 hours, many streets are under water, and schools have been closed for the last two days.

In a press release on Thursday, Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri warned of an unprecedented humanitarian disaster due to the siege-induced power crisis and the atrocious weather conditions, describing the situation as “collective punishment.”

Some 30 people have been injured in car accidents and building collapses since the onset of the current bad weather bringing flooding of roads and houses in its wake.

Yousef al-Zahar, Director General of Civil Defense, said that civil defense crews are doing what they can, but they are hampered by the lack of fuel due to the siege, and cannot pump flood-waters.

Interior Minister Fathi Hammad on Wednesday noted the lack of equipment necessary for civil defence activities, stressing the need for the international community to put pressure on Israel to allow the entry of heavy equipment and tools in order to enable the disaster emergency committees to do their work.

His calls so far seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

The simple solution to the humanitarian crisis in Gaza – lifting of the illegal Israeli siege, and opening the Rafah border for the legitimate passage of people and goods – is in the hands of the international community – along with the lives of all Gazans freezing in the dark tonight with no hope of real help reaching them.

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One response

  1. Stan Squires

    I am from vancouver,canada and i wanted to say that if it wasn’t for the israeli apartheid gov.Gaza wouldn’t have these problems.The apartheid gov.makes the problems with the storm a lot worse.Who ever is suppling israel with oil is complicit in this crime against Gaza.
    The western govs.to are complicit in the problems in Gaza because of their support for israeli apartheid.Israel wouldn’t last a month without support from western govs.Shame on the western govs.for supporting israel.It is time to overthrow these reactionary western govs. along with the israeli gov.

    December 15, 2013 at 10:55 pm

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