August 8, 2014
By Isabel Kershner and Jodi Rudoren
I think Hamas recognizes the word ceasefire rather than truce. They mean the same thing.
Hamas's demands for an end to the blockade is the linchpin.
Israel has no reason to be killing Palestinians. It has completed it's ? mission ? of closing the tunnels and they need to simply stop the hostilities with Gaza and it's residents. That means the people have the right to live and develop an economy.
The loss of large stretches of agricultural land, after 1967, due to land confiscation and closures, and limitations on water supply and product markets, has led to a substantial decline in the production of this sector.
In 1967, Palestinian agricultural production was almost identical to Israel's: tomatoes, cucumbers and melons were roughly half of Israel's crop; plums and grape production were equal to Israel's; and Palestinian production of olives, dates and almonds was higher. At that time, the West Bank exported 80% of the entire vegetable crop it produced, and 45% of total fruit production (Hazboun, S., 1986).
The agricultural sector was hit hard after Israel occupied the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Thereafter the sector,s contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the Palestinian Occupied Territories declined. Between 1968/1970 and 1983/1985 the percentage of agricultural contribution to the overall GDP in the West Bank fell from 37.4-53.5% to 18.5-25.4% (UNCTAD, 1990). The labour force employed in this sector has also declined. Between 1969 and 1985, the agricultural labour force, as a percentage of the total labour force, fell from 46 to 27.4% (Kahan, D., 1987)....
...Marketing of farm products and their distribution to local and external markets is one of the major obstacles facing Palestinian farmers. Throughout the occupation years, selling Palestinian agricultural products within Israel requires special permits to be issued by the Israeli authorities. Transporting products from north to south in the West Bank has become difficult as well, especially after Israel enforced a closure on East Jerusalem, the main road connecting northern with southern parts of the West Bank. Movement of agricultural products between the West Bank and Gaza Strip is also subject to Israeli control....
The hoops the Palestinians have to go through to travel and/or trade their goods is hideous.