Isolation and division take their toll in Gaza Strip
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The National
by Omar Karmi - July 30, 2009 - 12:00am

Just across the street from the rubble of the Palestinian parliament building, which was bombed on the first day of Israel’s assault on the Gaza Strip in late Dec ember 2008, and a few houses down from the crater that marks the site where a Palestinian police station was destroyed on the same day, a cheery little shop nestles among the grey concrete.

Israel to transfer cement to Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
July 29, 2009 - 12:00am

Israel will transfer cement and other construction materials to Gaza for its reconstruction effort. The decision announced Wednesday was made by Defense Minister Ehud Barak. The hundreds of tons of cement will reportedly be transferred directly to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, bypassing the terrorist Hamas leaders of the coastal strip. It is the first time that Israel has allowed cement, metal pipes and other building material into Gaza since last winter's Operation Cast Lead, Israel had feared that Hamas would use the material for terrorist purposes.

A View from the Ground
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Middle East Progress
by Taghreed El-Khodary - (Interview) July 28, 2009 - 12:00am

Tell us what the situation on the ground is like.

'Hamas may get claws into Gaza aid'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jerusalem Post
by Yaakov Katz, Herb Keinon - July 24, 2009 - 12:00am

Increasingly concerned that Hamas will steal money donated for Gaza's rehabilitation, the Defense Ministry distributed a document this week revealing that unions affiliated with the terrorist group have set up joint committees with UN agencies that dispense humanitarian aid. The document was distributed to the Foreign Ministry, Finance Ministry and the Israeli intelligence community, and was also sent to the United States to warn it that the $900 million it has pledged to help rebuild the Gaza Strip could fall into Hamas hands.

Gaza war rubble will take a year to clear - UN
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Reuters
July 9, 2009 - 12:00am

Palestinian workers will need one year to clear a half million tonnes of concrete rubble from Gaza Strip districts bombed and bulldozed by Israeli forces during their winter offensive, the United Nations said on Thursday. The United Nations Development Programme was beginning its rubble removal project six months after the 3-week war ended on Jan. 18, with still no idea of when organised reconstruction could begin, said the UNDP's Jens-Anders Toyberg-Frandzen.

How Israel's naval blockade denies Gazans food, aid
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Christian Science Monitor
by Mel Frykberg - July 1, 2009 - 12:00am

Bringing fresh attention to its blockade of the Gaza Strip, Israel on Tuesday turned back a boat attempting to deliver three tons of medical supplies to Gazans. After a radio message asking the small ferry to turn back was ignored, the Israeli Navy boarded the boat and redirected the vessel to the Israeli port of Ashdod. Reuters quoted a police source as saying that the activists aboard, members of the US-based Free Gaza movement, would "likely be deported."

Israelis intercept Gaza aid ship
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
June 30, 2009 - 12:00am

Israeli forces have boarded a ship trying to carry aid and pro-Palestinian activists to the Gaza Strip in defiance of Israel's blockade of the territory. The 20 passengers include former US congresswoman Cynthia McKinney and Nobel Prize winner Mairead Maguire. The activists also include some Britons, campaigners said. Ms McKinney described it as "an outrageous violation of international law", as the boat was on a humanitarian mission and was not in Israeli waters. The Israeli military said the boat was trying to enter Gaza illegally.

U.N. fact-finding commission faces skepticism in Gaza
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Los Angeles Times
by Edmund Sanders - June 29, 2009 - 12:00am

Reporting from The Gaza Strip -- A novel approach toward injecting international justice into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict got underway Sunday in this embattled enclave, but it left neither side particularly satisfied. Borrowing from the South African reconciliation experience, a United Nations fact-finding commission opened what it said was the first-of-its-kind public hearing to gather witness testimony about alleged war crimes during Israel's 22-day assault on the Gaza Strip in winter.

Gaza residents 'live in despair'
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from BBC News
by Aleem Maqbool - June 29, 2009 - 12:00am

In a report, it said that a main cause was the continuing Israeli blockade. The report comes six months after the end of Israel's military offensive in Gaza in which at least 1,100 Palestinians died. Israel said the offensive was aimed at curbing rocket attacks into southern Israel by Palestinian militants. The Red Cross says that the people of Gaza are unable to rebuild their lives and are sliding ever deeper into despair. There is not the cement or steel to reconstruct neighbourhoods hit by Israeli strikes.

U.S. ups pressure on Israel to end Gaza blockade
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Barak Ravid - June 18, 2009 - 12:00am

The United States has stepped up pressure on Israel regarding the Gaza Strip: Three weeks ago it sent Jerusalem a diplomatic note officially protesting Gaza policy and demanding a more liberal opening of the border crossings to facilitate reconstruction. U.S. and Israeli sources say the note was followed by a verbal communication clarifying that the Obama administration thinks Israel's linkage of the case of abducted soldier Gilad Shalit and the opening of the crossings was not constructive.

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