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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
United Nations Radio
2 December 2010

Palestinians still need relief assistance: OCHA

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Daily life for Palestinians living in Gaza remains a struggle despite the easing of blockade on Gaza by Israel, which allowed more consumer goods into the region, according to the United Nations.

Over 75 per cent of Palestinians in Gaza are dependent on relief assistance, which includes food, shelter as well as cash.

United Nations Humanitarian Affairs Coordinator for the Occupied Palestinian Territory Maxwell Gaylard says aid agencies will require at least 575 million dollars over the next year to provide relief assistance to Palestinians.

"What you have in Gaza since the 20th of June is an improvement in the range of items that are available. It has essentially gone from 30 or 40 to maybe some hundreds. Has this improved life in Gaza? Well it has improved life for some, for those who already have the means to pay for this wider range of consumer goods. What Gaza really requires is the revival of its construction and reconstruction industry. All of the Gazans we speak to they now say this is their top priority even beyond security and education health, they want that construction and reconstruction industry to begin again."

Mr Gaylard says given the opportunity, Palestinians have the capacity to develop a vibrant export industry, which would help increase income, reduce poverty and unemployment.

(duration: 38")

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