After letting Israel bomb and murder thousands of innocent children, women and men, the so-called international community is ready to help Palestinians recover from genocide.
The United States and the European Union have pledged to donate at least 617 million euros to rebuild the Gaza Strip.
This was announced on Sunday by the Secretary of State of the United States, John Kerry, and the head of European diplomacy, Catherine Ahston, in the donor conference being held in Cairo.
The meeting, which was also attended by the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, and delegations from more than 70 countries and international organizations, is the third of its kind to be held in six years. The meeting is used as a tool to raise funds for Gaza, after the last Israeli offensive resulted in the murder of at least 2,500 Palestinians.
Those who were not victims of the Israeli incursion, saw their land, homes and infrastructure destroyed, and it is expected that the money collected by the Europeans and Americans will help finance the reconstruction of basic services such as sewage, water and electricity.
The final amount that will be given to Palestinians seems to have reached $5 billion on contributions from different countries. On Sunday the US announced it will send $212 million, while Qatar promised $1 billion.
The president of the Palestinian National Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, has claimed Gaza will receive a total of $4,000 million from the international community to meet the most urgent needs of Gazans and to repair infrastructure damaged in the war.
The Palestinian President took the opportunity to denounce those who want to “turn a political conflict into a religious one” and called for the end of the Israeli occupation, which has been defined as “the longest in modern history.”
The first funding commitments came from the hand of John Kerry, who announced the release financial aid over the next three years.
Ashton has said that the sum of the contributions from the EU and its Member States amount to about 450 million euros. Of these, 18 million are from the Spanish government, as reported by the Secretary of State for Cooperation, Jesús Gracia, who chairs the Spanish delegation.
However, beyond the aid figures, all the leaders who took part in the opening ceremony of the conference stressed the need to achieve a political settlement to end the dispute between Palestinians and Israelis.
His recipe is not new and is based on the creation of two contiguous and viable states, a goal that has proved elusive for more than two decades of fruitless negotiations.
“There can be no return to the former status quo that has proved unsustainable … Only a credible resumption of peace negotiations can bring about a lasting solution to the current crisis,” said Catherine Ahston.
The US Secretary of State, has also urged the parties to resume peace talks. “I do not think anyone wants to come back here in two years to rebuild Gaza … I declare clearly that the United States remains fully committed to the return of the negotiations,” said Kerry.
Because of the wars and the embargo, Gaza is experiencing a severe humanitarian crisis. An estimated 20,000 homes were completely or partially destroyed in the last war, leaving 100,000 families without a home.
Israel also bombed more than 50 hospitals and health centers. Under terms of the agreement for a permanent ceasefire signed last August 26, that ended nearly two months of fighting, Israel has relaxed the strict embargo imposed on Gaza since 2006.
In the coming weeks, Palestinian and Israeli negotiators should resume talks to resolve outstanding disputes, including the construction of a port and an airport.
As requested by the international community, the Palestinian Authority will be responsible for coordinating reconstruction thanks to the agreement between the Palestinian factions to form a national unity government of technocratic profile. Since 2006, Gaza had been controlled by the Islamist militia Hamas, considered a terrorist group by Israel and the USA.
Last week, Sweden announced its official recognition of Palestine as State, a move that was met with hostility by the regime in Tel Aviv. The Netanyahu government immediately summoned the Swedish ambassador in Tel Aviv to demand an explanation.
Sweden is the first EU member to take such a step. Along with Sweden, other European nations such as Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Malta, Poland and Romania have also sided with the Palestinian people.
Worldwide, only traditional US allies have refused to support the right of the Palestinians to have their own nation. In total, 134 of 193 UN Member States have recognised the State of Palestine.
Last 29 November 2012, the United Nations approved a motion that intended to change Palestine’s status from “non-member to observer state”. The vote tally was 138 in favor and only 9 against.
Luis R. Miranda is the Founder and Editor of The Real Agenda. His 16 years of experience in Journalism include television, radio, print and Internet news. Luis obtained his Journalism degree from Universidad Latina de Costa Rica, where he graduated in Mass Media Communication in 1998. He also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Broadcasting from Montclair State University in New Jersey. Among his most distinguished interviews are: Costa Rican President Jose Maria Figueres and James Hansen from NASA Space Goddard Institute. Read more about Luis.