Israel resumes partial imports from Gaza Strip
March 5, Jerusalem:Israel will be resuming partial imports of fruit and vegetable from the Gaza strip next week, according to Israeli officials on Thursday.
The officials further stated that the measure was taken in an effort to help strengthen Gaza’s economy which had been devastated by last year’s war with Israel, and to make up for a shortfall in produce from Israeli farmlands, that have been left fallow, in accordance with biblical law.
Israel, over the past couple of months, has been gradually relaxing restrictions on commerce across its fortified border as the July-August war, last year left a widespread destruction in the enclave.
According to COGAT, a shipment of tomatoes and eggplants would be brought in from the territory on Sunday. “Future stages are expected to include a wider variety of vegetables, totaling 1,000 to 1,500 tons.
Each ton is valued at approximately 3,000 shekels ($750),” COGAT said in a statement, adding that the imports were scheduled to run the duration of the Jewish calendar year that expires in September. “The steps taken are meant to support the Palestinian population while segregating the Hamas organization, which is a terror entity that prevents the reconstruction of Gaza and uses its resources,” COGAT head Major-General Yoav Mordechai said.
Israel had previously stopped all imports from the Gaza strip after the Islamist group Hamas took over the Palestinian territory in 2007.
The Oslo Times