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UNRWA summer camps kick off in Gaza

June 16, 2011 4:47 P.M. (Updated: June 17, 2011 3:37 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Children in Gaza attending UNRWA summer camps this year will attempt to break four world records in July, in an effort to top the two records smashed the year before.

An Olympic-style torch relay through the Gaza Strip kicked off the summer camps, known as the UNRWA Summer Games, which according to organizers is the largest recreational program for an estimated quarter of a million children in Gaza.

"This year, both the games and the Israeli blockade of Gaza enter their fifth year," a statement said.

During the summer of 2011, the 3,500 kids will attempt to play the most parachute games in the world at the Khan Younis Stadium.

2,024 youngsters will also simultaneously dribble a football at Kherbit El-Addas in Rafah, make a 5,400 square meter hand painting - set to be the largest in the world - at the Palestine Stadium, and attempt to break their own "most simultaneously flying kites" record with 9,000 at the El-Waha beach in the northern Strip.

Initiated at the request of the local community, organizers say the games give Gaza children a chance to have fun and a sense of normality.

"We are giving these children a rare opportunity – which shouldn’t be exceptional – but it is," acting director of UNRWA operations in Gaza, Christer Nordahl said.
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