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27 August 2020 | Fatima Sookharia

The structural, systematic strangulation of Palestinian life on a social, intellectual, cultural and physical level has gone on for decades.

#KeepingTheFocus on the Palestinian struggle in 2020 while the world navigates their way through the Coronavirus and other more recent world developments has been a challenging one as the cameras shift focus to vaccines, survival techniques and other disasters.

Sadly, while the world focus has shifted, the Palestinians are survivors under the strangling occupation that they’ve endured since 2007.

Gaza is in a crippling situation.  Blockaded by air, land and sea while currently dealing with an erasure of their land.

Through all of this, Palestine has not been spared from the coronavirus pandemic, and this only heightens  the already crippling humanitarian crises.

Alaa Abu Shabaan, journalist and Humanitarian worker of the Al Zaytoon Association in the Gaza Strip says, “Things here are getting really worse, because we are still under the blockade for almost 14 years and a new challenge has come here to our land which is Covid-19. Every part of our life is affected in a bad way, starting from education, economy, health, and unfortunately things are getting serious and we are trying as humanitarians , doing our best to help the people here.”

In terms of Covid-19, medical resources are scant. “The situation of health in Gaza was very bad before Covid 19, we have very limited equipment, we don’t have enough experience and enough equipment to provide for the people but we are trying our best.”

When asked about the everyday happenings in Gaza and what life is like, Abu Shabaan responded, “50 % of the people were unemployed before covid-19, and since 75 % of the people here are now unemployed. People are unable to provide food for their families. Limitations on power supply are so strict with only 3 hours of electricity is available to them a day. Teachers in Gaza are working without salaries but we unite together to keep life going and we don’t have any other choice, we have to unite together so that we can help ourselves.”

Salaam Foundation has launched a campaign to assist with emergency food and covid 19 medical supplies and hygiene packs. We require your support. Join the call for justice and peace


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