Thursday, April 15, 2010

Reuters repeats calumnies against Israel

On April 4th, 2010 Reuters correspondent Nidal al-Mughrabi reported:
Israel allowed a shipment of clothes and shoes for Palestinian traders into the Gaza Strip on Sunday for the first time in its almost three-year-old blockade of the Hamas-controlled enclave.
We noted that based on photos taken in 2009 of Gaza shops stock full of clothes and shoes, it seemed implausible that Israel had been embargoing deliveries of this merchandise for traders.

Al-Mughrabi repeats the claim in a story yesterday:
Israel recently began to ease up on its blockade of the Gaza Strip, allowing in some goods it used to ban, such as clothes and shoes and, this week, wood and aluminum.
So we turned to an Israeli government report appearing on the independent ReliefWeb site last year:
November summary:
Contrary to persistent reports of a "siege" on the Gaza Strip, there is considerable movement of goods and people between Israel and Gaza. In November:
- The amount of merchandise entering the Gaza Strip increased - over 64,000 tons (89% from the private sector and only 11% from the international community) of food, medicines, hygiene products, clothing, agricultural supplies, and cement.
Though it's possible that all of the merchandise on retailers' racks was manufactured in Gaza, the photos appearing in Palestine Today would seem to bear-out the ReliefWeb report and discredit al-Mughrabi's claims.

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