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Date posted: January 21, 2008
By MIFTAH

MIFTAH, the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy expresses its grave concern for the deteriorating situation in the Gaza Strip, particularly after Israeli authorities completely banned basic fuel and food supplies from entering the Strip. Gazaís main power plant shut down on January 20 due to the lack of fuel, plunging the overwhelming majority of the Strip into darkness.

The Gaza Strip, which has been suffering from the blockade imposed by Israel since last June, is now facing an escalating humanitarian crisis. There is a severe shortage of medical and food supplies, hospital generators have shut down and basic necessities are extremely scarce.

MIFTAH views this newest Israeli punitive measure with much concern and alarm, given that an entire civilian population is being punished in order for Israel to forward its own political agenda. MIFTAH calls on Israel to immediately reverse these punitive measures in line with its obligations towards international humanitarian law. MIFTAH also calls on all voices of conscience worldwide to protest this cruel and inhumane collective punishment and demand that Israel reopen the borders to allow fuel and basic supplies into the Strip.

The blackout in Gaza comes on the heels of Israelís ongoing military operations in the Strip, which have claimed close to 40 lives in the past week. MIFTAH reiterates its demand that Israel adhere to its obligations as an occupying power to safeguard the lives of its occupied citizens, an obligation which it often disregards. It is the responsibility of the international community, particularly those who have assumed roles in mediating a settlement to the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, to step in and force Israel to lift the siege off of Gaza.

Source: MIFTAH
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