Sunday, January 6, 2008

Little Gauze, Gas in Gaza as Israel Tightens Closure on Palestinians

(770 words)
by Joseph E. Mulligan

In the Gaza Strip, Palestine, the conflict between Israel, which controls the borders and since June has been closing them, and the Palestinians, who inhabit the small strip of land along the Mediterranean, is affecting the civilian population in a way that clearly violates international law.
For instance, Dr. Ahmed Abou Nekira, director of the public Al Najar Hospital in Rafah on the Egyptian border, told me last week that his hospital needs a 19,000-liter reserve supply of gasoline, especially with the frequent fuel and electricity cutoffs, but the current stock is only 1,500 liters. The hospital cannot provide milk for its child patients; parents bring it if they can find and afford it in the Gaza market.
As I was leaving the hospital, a woman approached me who clearly needed something; but since I don't understand Arabic it was only on a later visit to her home with my translator that I learned she could not find the needed medications for her asthmatic and epileptic twelve-year-old son. ... (to examine the full text for possible publication, contact us).
The author, a Jesuit priest from Detroit who lives in Nicaragua, is working for six weeks as a member of the Lansing-based Michigan Peace Team in Palestine.

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