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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Red Cross: "There is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza"

From the IDF:

Mathilde Redmatn is the deputy director of the Red Cross in the Gaza Strip. Redmatn has had the opportunity to see with her eyes what most of us only see on television screens.

On previous assignments, Redmatn has lived in Congo and Colombia. Her activities in Gaza are completely different, she says.

"Of course the work is different everywhere, but here the fabric of life is problematic," she says. "There are two peoples, one living under closure and one living under daily rocket fire, which violates international law.

Redmatn has a lot to say about problems related to the closure Israel has placed on Gaza but she also talks about the surprising normalcy in one of the most explosive regions of the world that receives extensive media attention.

"There is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza," she explains. "If you go to the supermarket, there are products. There are restaurants and a nice beach. The problem is mainly in maintenance of infrastructure and in access to goods, concrete for example. Israel has the legitimate right to protect the civilan population, this right should be balanced with the rights of 1.5 million people living in the Gaza Strip. Despite the easing of the closure and the partial lifting of export bans in the wake of the flotilla incident, continued restrictions on the movement of people and difficulties in importing building materials hampered sustainable economic recovery and dashed any hope of leading a normal and dignified life".

(h/t Challah Hu Akbar via HuffPoMonitor)