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The humanitarian situation in Gaza and FAO's response

The humanitarian situation in Gaza and FAO's response
Jan 2009

The recent conflict in the Gaza Strip has seen extensive damage inflicted on local infrastructure, with preliminary estimates placing the financial extent of the destruction at almost USD 1 billion. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and other agencies believe that almost all of Gaza’s 10 000 smallholder farms have suffered damage and many have been completely destroyed. This has had a severe impact on the livelihoods and food security of those residing in the Gaza Strip.

As the cost of fresh food rises, Gazans are facing an acute shortage of nutritious, locally-produced and affordable food, relying instead on emergency aid distributions. Animal protein is generally unavailable following damage to the sector and FAO is expecting to witness widespread wasting and micronutrient deficiencies. In addition, the farmers and fishers whose assets have been damaged face an irreversible loss of their livelihoods, placing the already weak Gazan economy at risk of collapse.