$7.8 bn needed for reconstruction in Gaza; Israel’s war bill is $2.5 billion!
An estimated 7.8 billion dollars are needed for the Gaza Strip to reconstruct after being destroyed during the 50-day Israeli offensive on the coastal enclave, a senior Palestinian official said Thursday.
“The direct and indirect losses resulted from the Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip reached 4.4 billion dollars,” Xinhua quoted Mohamed Ishteyah, director of the Palestinian Economical Council for Development and Reconstruction, as telling in a news conference in Ramallah.
“The other needed 3.4 billion dollars will be devoted to developing projects in Gaza, including a sea port, a desalination water station,” Ishteyah said.
He noted that “the process of reconstruction needs a complete lifting of the Israeli blockade to get a full movement of goods and individuals through the crossing points and guarantee a comprehensive participation in the process.”
“The Israeli offensive on Gaza destroyed 60,000 housing units, including 20,000 units that do not fit for living and the others which have been badly or moderately damaged,” Ishteyah said.
The amount of rubble out of the destruction reached 1. 8 million tonnes which can be recycled and reused in enlarging the Gaza Strip area from the sea, he added.
On July 8, Israel launched a large-scale offensive on the Gaza Strip, killing 2,140 Palestinians and destroying thousands of houses and infrastructure facilities.
A “comprehensive ” truce Aug 26 brokered by Egypt between the Palestinians and Israel was reached in Cairo over the conflict in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.
Cost of destruction
Israel’s military has said that more than $2.5 billion was spent for carrying out military operations in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip that left more than 2,000 people dead.
Israel’s Minister of Military Affairs Moshe Yaalon Tuesday put the expenditure of the war on Gaza at “more than nine billion shekels”, which is more than $2.5 billion, Press TV reported.
Over 6,000 places were attacked in Gaza, including “more than 5,000 by the air force, about 900 from land and sea”, the minister said giving account of Tel Aviv’s air, sea and ground attacks.
He said the interception of a Palestinian rocket by Israel’s Iron Dome missile system costs Tel Aviv $100,000.
An Egyptian-brokered truce between Israel and Hamas came into effect Aug 26. The agreement reached in Cairo stipulates the ease of Israel’s seven-year-old blockade as well as the provision of a guarantee that Palestinian demands will be met.
More than 2,000 Palestinians were killed and 10,000 injured by Israeli bombardments on the coastal enclave after Israel launched Operation Protective Edge July 8 to stamp out cross-border rocket fire from Hamas. On the Israeli side, five civilians and 64 soldiers were killed.