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UNRWA director: Innocent children pay toll of Gaza siege

June 27, 2010 3:10 P.M. (Updated: June 28, 2010 3:49 P.M.)
Bethlehem/Gaza – Ma’an – It is "shameful" that the international community allowed the Gaza siege to enter its fourth year as "750,000 innocent children are paying the toll," UNRWA director of Gaza operations John Ging said Sunday.

Speaking at a news conference in Gaza City, Ging added “The political focus should be translated into action rather than discussing improvements or easing the siege. This siege must end completely and immediately.”

Further, he noted that ending the blockade would not only bring peace to the Strip, but to the whole region.

UNRWA currently provides aid for around 800,000 of the 1 million refugees living in the coastal enclave.

In a statement to the Advisory Commission last week, UNRWA chief Filippo Grandi explained that the organization has reduced the support it provides to refugees “hardest hit by poverty and social marginalization” due to a lack of funding.

Grandi condemned the “inherently pathological nature” of the Gaza blockade, which he said is “causing human misery on a massive scale.”

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