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January 24, 2008

Gaza's Economy "Advanced" Under Israeli Rule

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Egyptian Rafah

Those who claim that Israel's administration of the West Bank and Gaza harmed the economy in those areas might consider the observations of Gaza resident Ahlan Ashour, who was quoted in the New York Times after crossing from the Palestinian controlled section of Rafah in the Gaza Strip into the Egyptian controlled part of town.

Ahlan Ashour, 38, came with his wife to visit the Egyptian family, the Barhoums, who had put them up for 24 days during an earlier period when the Rafah crossing was shut. Mr. Ashour’s wife, Mohsin Elloulu, said she was struck by how much poorer the Egyptians of Rafah are. “At least our streets are paved,” she said of Gaza. The current lack of electricity and supplies is terrible, she said. “But materially, we’re so much more advanced in Gaza.” A driver here, she said, makes less than $1.50 a day, and in normal times in Gaza, $27. “But nothing is normal now,” she said.

The Gaza half was administered by Israel for the better part of the past 25 years, while the part of town across the border has since 1982 been under Egyptian sovereignty.

Posted by GI at January 24, 2008 02:25 PM

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