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Home » Discuss » Topic Forums » Israel/Palestine Donate to DU
Jefferson23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-25-11 05:13 PM
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Despite swap, Gaza remains imprisoned
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While 1,000 Palestinian prisoners will be released, 1.8 million people living in Gaza are still not free.

Raji Sourani and Eyad Sarraj Last Modified: 24 Oct 2011 11:06

The prisoner exchange agreement concluded between Israel and Hamas has brought relief to thousands of families eager to see their loved ones return home. In the midst of Israel's prolonged belligerent occupation, we are witnessing a rare moment of unified Israeli and Palestinian celebration. However, this event, and the resultant media fanfare, must not distract attention from the underlying tragic reality.

The real issues demanding attention centre upon Israel's 63-year belligerent occupation, and the routine violations of international law perpetrated by the occupation forces. The most glaring example of this is the absolute closure imposed by Israel on the Gaza Strip.

Israel first initiated its closure policy with respect to the Gaza Strip in 1991. In recent years, it has been progressively tightened, following the election of President Abbas, the detention of Gilad Shalit, and the Hamas takeover of the Gaza Strip. Today, the closure is absolute.

Analysis: Hamas-Israel prisoners swap

As many as 1.8 million Palestinians in Gaza are cut off from the rest of Palestine, and the outside world. This economic and psychological suffocation has decimated the Gazan economy, driving unemployment, poverty and aid dependence to record levels. An entire generation has been isolated and denied access to the outside world.

in full: http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2011/10/20...
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