Ma'an News Agency
January 31, 2011 - 1:00am

The ongoing unrest in Egypt affected prices in the blockaded Gaza Strip, where most of the commodities have been flooding to the coastal enclave through smuggling tunnels.

Locals say items like cigarettes and basic food went up by almost a third. Gas stations have closed because owners are worried they could fail to get enough fuel due to the deteriorating situation in Egypt, namely in the Sinai.

Onlookers noticed that owners of grocery stores and supermarkets were trying their best to stock up on as many goods as they could fearing supply through smuggling tunnels might stop at any moment.

Since Israel imposed a crippling siege on the Gaza Strip after Hamas took control, the main source of goods in the enclave has been hundreds of smuggling tunnels along the borders with Egypt, especially in the southern Gaza Strip. Fuel, cigarettes, cheese, candy, and other items have been brought to Gaza every day through the tunnels.

The ministry of national economy in the Hamas-run government in Gaza, for its part, has tried to reassure the population telling them that fuel and food products are abundant in the enclave.

“We are monitoring everything and following up with all sides,” a ministry statement said.


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