THE United Nations says the ongoing Israeli war in Palestine has left the Gaza Strip ‘uninhabitable’ and that the destruction in the Palestinian territory will take tens of billions of dollars and ‘decades’ to reverse.
In a report published on Wednesday, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) assessed the social and economic deterioration in besieged Gaza since the genocidal Israeli aggression began nearly four months ago.
The report stated that the war has displaced 85 per cent of Gaza’s population, halted economic activities and further worsened poverty and unemployment in one of the world’s most densely populated areas.
It added that unemployment had surged to 79.3 per cent while 37,379 buildings – equivalent to 18 per cent of Gaza’s total structures – had been damaged or destroyed by the Israeli onslaught.
It estimated: ‘The Gaza Strip, half of whose population are children, is now rendered almost uninhabitable, with people lacking adequate sources of income and access to water, sanitation, health or education.
‘UNCTAD’s assessment underscores that restoring pre-conflict socio-economic conditions in Gaza will take decades and requires substantial foreign aid.’
The report also found that Gaza’s gross domestic product (GDP) dropped by 24 per cent after the massive Israeli assault and that it would take ‘until 2092 just to restore the GDP levels of 2022’.
It further noted that Gaza’s dire economic situation originates from well before the current war.
‘Gaza’s economic contradictions, rooted in 56 years of occupation and a 17-year blockade, necessitate a thorough understanding and realistic strategies to unlock its growth potential through measures that include restoring the Gaza International Airport …, building a seaport and enabling the Palestinian government to develop the natural gasfields discovered in the 1990s in the Mediterranean Sea,’ it said.
UNCTAD economist Rami Alazzeh, who co-authored the report, said new data indicates that 50 per cent of the Gaza structures are damaged or destroyed.
‘The longer these (military) operations in Gaza go on … the more severe the impact will be,’ Alazzeh warned. ‘Gaza currently is uninhabitable.’
Israel waged its brutal war on Gaza on October 7 after the Palestinian Hamas resistance group carried out Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity in retaliation for its intensified atrocities against the Palestinian people.
So far, the Tel Aviv regime has killed at least 26,900 Palestinians, mostly women and children, and injured 65,949 others.
However, the US imperialists and its allies are losing the war with the Israeli army suffering hundreds of dead and many more wounded.
They have also managed to activate hundreds of millions of workers worldwide to march for victory to Palestine and to work for the defeat of their own governments and the victory of Hamas and the Palestinian revolution. This situation is now being reflected in the highest political ranks in the US and in the UK.
Yesterday’s Daily Telegraph saw its Deputy US editor Rozina Sabur writing: ‘Anthony Blinken, America’s top diplomat, has commissioned the State Department to review the potential options for US and international recognition of a Palestinian state.
‘This comes after ex-Tory leader, Foreign Secretary, Lord Cameron revealed that Britain is weighing up whether to formally recognise the State of Palestine.
The Foreign Secretary says that Britain had a responsibility to work towards a two-state solution, saying: ‘We with allies will look at the issue of recognising a Palestinian state, including at the United Nations.’
On Saturday 3 February, there is to be a gigantic march for Palestine in London giving full support to the fighters of Hamas.
Hundreds of thousands of workers will be taking part, many of them members of the trade union movement.
Now is the time for them to act decisively for Palestine by telling the TUC that it must call a general strike in support of Palestine to bring down the Tories and establish the Palestinian state ‘from the river to the sea!’ Nothing less will do!