- Israeli Blockade of Gaza Severely Hindering Lives of Disabled People, Says Report
by MEE staff, https://www.middleeasteye.net/
Lack of infrastructure, electricity and understanding makes life hard for disabled people, Human Rights Watch reports
The Israeli-led blockade of Gaza has had a disproportionately damaging effect on disabled people in the besieged enclave, a new report has warned. Human Rights Watch said that the 13-year old blockade of the Gaza Strip – imposed by Israel and upheld by Egypt – combined with failings by the Hamas-led authorities in the small Palestinian territory, has restricted disabled people’s access to vital services such as to assistance devices, healthcare, and electricity.
Severe travel restrictions imposed since 2007, combined with power outages and repeated Israeli military operations targeting the enclave, has further exacerbated the problem. “More than a decade of Israeli restrictions have robbed people with disabilities in Gaza of their freedom of movement, and often access to the devices, electricity, and technology they need to communicate or leave their homes,” said Emina Cerimovic, senior researcher in the disability rights division at Human Rights Watch, in a statement.
“These policies, alongside the failure of Hamas authorities to address the lack of accessibility across Gaza and widespread stigma, contribute to making life in Gaza extraordinarily difficult for many people with disabilities.”