June 5, 2012 - 12:00am

Ahmed Dalloul, 34-year-old owner of a dairy factory, stood near the rubble of his factory angrily and sadly. He was unable to find out a logical explanation for Israeli aerial attack that destroyed his factory Sunday night, the fourth time in three years.

"The Israeli warplanes directly struck my factory at Sabra neighborhood in Gaza City last night for no reason. I don't understand why Israel destroys my factory each time I rebuild it and fix it," Dalloul said, adding that "My factory was destroyed four times in the past three years."

Overnight Sunday, Israeli war jets carried out two airstrikes against the Gaza Strip, one targeting an empty cultivated area and the other targeting Dalloul's factory, leaving one civilian who lives near the factory moderately injured.

Israel claimed that its war jets struck last night two targets used by Gaza militant groups to launch rockets from the coastal enclave, ruled by the Hamas movement, at Israel's southern towns and communities.

"I challenge Israel and all its security apparatuses that there are any kinds of weapons or rockets in my factory," Dalloul said, adding that he built up the factory 14 years ago and his losses over the past three years reached more than one million U.S. dollars.

Industry in the Gaza Strip has been badly damaged since Israel had imposed a tight blockade on the enclave and considered it a hostile entity after Hamas violently seized control of it in June 2007. According to official figures, Israel had destroyed over 80 percent of the Gaza Strip's industry.

"I call on the Arab and Islamic world as well as the European Union to immediately form an inquiry committee to investigate the attacking on my factory for four times. I welcome the committee to Gaza and to check if there are weapons in my factory," said Dalloul.

Israel claimed that Dalloul owns 51 percent of the factory, with Hamas owning 49 percent. However, Dalloul said "these are lies aiming at justifying their crimes."

"I swear that Hamas didn't pay me one dollar," he added.

On Friday, a new wave of violence erupted between Israel and Gaza militants, leaving three Palestinian militants and one Israeli soldier killed and three Palestinians wounded.

"When the factory was destroyed two years ago for the second time, a German diplomat visited here and saw the destruction with no weapons or rockets. I will be crazy if I open a factory under my house, and put my wife and children in risk."

"I will sue Israel," Dalloul said.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017