Tell Congress to end the Gaza blockade


Tell Congress to end the Gaza blockade and change U.S. policy concerning sanctions and other acts of economic coercion

Peace Not Walls 2

About one year ago, Israel carried out its most recent major assault on Gaza, killing at least 253 Palestinians, including 66 children, and temporarily displacing over 113,000 people from their homes. Despite the passage of time, Palestinians in Gaza are still struggling to recover from this attack. Almost three-quarters of Gaza’s 2 million Palestinians are refugees, displaced from their homes by the Nakba (Arabic for “catastrophe”) of 1948, which was commemorated last month.

The ability of Palestinians in Gaza to rebuild is inhibited by the de facto blockade imposed on it by Israel. That blockade restricts Palestinian movement, limits the import of goods and restricts most exports. Building supplies, materials needed to run businesses, and other basic goods are not available in Gaza. Factories that can produce goods cannot, for the most part, send these goods to market outside Gaza. As a result, the unemployment rate in Gaza is nearly 50%, and over 80% of the population depends on international assistance to survive.

Basic services are also affected. The Gaza medical system regularly lacks between 30% and 50% of basic medical stocks, most water in Gaza is undrinkable, and the sewage and electrical systems damaged during attacks cannot be repaired.

Israel has said that the blockade is meant to punish and weaken Hamas, the Palestinian political party and resistance movement that governs Gaza, but more than 15 years after the blockade was first imposed, Hamas has not been weakened. The appreciable impact of the blockade is felt not by Hamas or other political players but by the civilian population of Gaza, whose rights have been systematically violated.

The time has come for the Israeli blockade of Gaza to end. The U.S. should also reconsider the sanctions and other means of economic coercion it imposes there and in other places in the Middle East and beyond. Contact your representative today and ask them to support an end to the Gaza blockade and a change in broad U.S. imposition of sanctions and other acts of economic coercion.

The situation in Gaza is somewhat unique, yet civilian populations in many other locations also suffer from sanctions regimes imposed and enforced by the U.S. and other international actors. In Afghanistan tens of millions of people face food insecurity due to the U.S. initially withholding billions of dollars of the nation’s central bank reserves and imposing sanctions and other financial restrictions on the country. In Cuba, U.S. sanctions have impoverished the population, leading Cubans to suffer from scarcity of food, essential medicines and needed medical equipment. In Iran, Yemen, Syria, North Korea and Venezuela, sanctions have devastated communities and lives. U.S. sanctions policy is in need of comprehensive review.

Contact your member of Congress and ask them to demand changes in U.S. sanctions policies.
POSTED 6/16/2022


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