A new U.N. report details how Israel is blocking Palestinian access to land and sea depriving people of the basic right to earn a livelihood.
According to the report, Palestinians have lost access to over 40% of land due to settlement activity . Settlements are built over existing farm land. In addition, Palestinian farmers cannot even approach the fences of settlements for fear of being attacked by Israeli settlers.
In addition, the Israeli army has blocked access to the sea. Palestinian fishermen can only access five to ten kilometers of coastline. To compound matters, the Israeli army has placed heavy restrictions on fishing even within the permissible areas. The report estimates that eight Palestinian vessels have been destroyed and 400 fishing nets have been destroyed by the army this year.
The Palestinian Authority is suffering from a $350 million budget gap. As part of the peace talks, U.N. peace mediator Tony Blair said that a report on an economic initiative was discussed on Frida y. Mr. Blair is confident that donors will step up to fill the existing budget gap.