Israel’s blockade on Gaza tightened: further import restrictions, a suspension of exports, and a reduction of the accessible fishing area. The 2018 Humanitarian Response Plan is only 24 per cent funded, an all-time low, forcing agencies to scale down interventions. Over 100 million litres of poorly-treated sewage discharged into the sea every day, posing serious health and environmental hazards for Gaza’s population. Herding communities in, or next to, a “firing zone” in eastern Nablus governorate face an increasingly coercive environment due to various Israeli practices.
$4.8 million urgently required for trauma management and emergency healthcare response to Gaza demonstrations. Housing survey reveals that 43,700 substandard homes in Gaza require full reconstruction or emergency shelter assistance. Military order allowing the demolition of new unlicensed structures in Area C within 96 hours from the issuance of a notice, frozen, pending decision by Israeli Supreme Court. Palestinian families move out of the Batan al Hawa neighbourhood in East Jerusalem due to coercive environment by Israeli settler presence.
Over 13,000 Palestinians injured since the start of the Gaza demonstrations, exceeding the number of injuries during the 2014 hostilities, and further straining the already limited capacity of Gaza’s health system. The continuation of food assistance programmes targeting over 1.2 million poor Palestinians in the Gaza Strip during the second half of 2018 is at risk due to severe funding shortfalls. 84 settler attacks resulting in Palestinian casualties or property damage in the first four months of 2018, the highest such figure since 2014. Palestinian Bedouin community in the outskirts of East Jerusalem, in Area C of the West Bank, at heightened risk of forcible transfer, following a final ruling by the Israeli Supreme Court.
40 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces during mass demonstrations in the Gaza Strip, and 6,800 injured; nearly 30 per cent of injuries by live ammunition (as of 30 April). Humanitarian agencies appealed for US$5.3 million for Gaza, for healthcare, mental health and psychological support, and protection monitoring. Electricity cuts of up to 20 hours a day continue to undermine service provision in Gaza, including education. Palestinian Bedouin community in Area C of the West Bank at heightened risk of forcible transfer following court hearing.
18 Palestinians killed and 1,400 injured by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip, the majority during demonstrations at the perimeter fence; concern over possible excessive use of force by Israeli soldiers. Some 22,000 people in Gaza are still displaced from the 2014 hostilities, primarily due to the lack of funding for reconstruction, and are living in precarious conditions and constant uncertainty. Seasonal expansions of the permitted fishing areas in Gaza have significantly increased the total catch, but this remains limited to low-value sardines; concern over the methods used to enforce access restrictions remain. The operation of mobile health clinics in 35 vulnerable communities in the West Bank has been halted, and is at risk in another 154 communities, due to severe funding gaps.
Donations of $3.5 million avert a halt of emergency fuel program in Gaza, preventing the collapse of vital services; available funding will be exhausted by mid-2018. Newly-built classrooms demolished in a Bedouin community located in an area planned for settlement expansion; 44 schools in Area C and East Jerusalem at risk of demolition. Closure of a West Bank village, ongoing for over one month, generates hardship and raises concern about collective punishment.
UNRWA is facing an unprecedented financial crisis, risking the agency’s ability to deliver urgent humanitarian assistance in the oPt, including to almost one million people in the Gaza Strip. Electricity outages of up to 16 hours a day, continue to undermine the provision of basic services in the Gaza Strip, despite an increase in electricity supply from Israel. Funding for emergency fuel distributed by the UN to 175 critical facilities will be exhausted by mid-February; $5.6 million is urgently required to prevent a collapse of services. 17 Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces across the oPt between 6 December 2017 and 30 January 2018 during protests and clashes, with some cases raising concern about excessive use of force.
The number of Palestinians allowed to move in and out of Gaza declined by almost 50 per cent in 2017 compared with 2016. High level of demolition of Palestinian structures in East Jerusalem in 2017 in contrast to significant decline in Area C. 2.5 million Palestinians across the oPt in need of humanitarian assistance and protection in 2018.
Over 560,000 Palestinians in Gaza residing in areas prone to flooding are at risk of temporary displacement due to the precarious state of infrastructure. 2017 marked a record of US$18.2 million in revenue for agricultural exports from Gaza in an otherwise poor economic situation, with the unemployment rate reaching over 46 per cent. Around 1,300 Palestinians in twelve herding communities in southern Hebron affected by intense Israeli military training and additional access restrictions, exacerbating the coercive environment facing them. The 2017 olive harvest season in the West Bank impacted by a rise in incidents of settler violence, and access restrictions to lands behind the Barrier and near Israeli settlements.
The continuation of the electricity crisis and the lack of funding for WASH interventions have rendered 1.45 million people in the Gaza Strip at risk of contracting waterborne, diseases, including as a result of flooding. Despite the evacuation of settlers from privately-owned Palestinian land, which was taken over or officially seized for the establishment or expansion of settlements, the Palestinian owners continue to face severe restrictions in accessing their land. 171 Palestinians in four herding communities in the northern Jordan Valley are at risk of forcible transfer, following the approval of demolitions by the Israeli High Court of Justice. Despite the positive developments regarding the Fatah and Hamas reconciliation agreement, it has not led, so far, to the reversal of the measures that triggered the latest deterioration in the humanitarian situation in Gaza.