Israeli navy forces abducted, early this morning, three fishermen working off the Rafah coast, in the southern Gaza Strip. Additionally, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation has released a report stating that life in the Gaza Strip has become unbearable due to the imposed siege and the closure of crossings.
An Al Ray Palestinian Media correspondent, quoting security sources, said that those arrested were Ibrahim Morad, Khamis Morad, and Ahmed Al-jezawi. Security added no more details about the incident.
Gaza fishing boats are exposed to near daily harassment by Israeli navy vessels, Al Ray reports:
On Monday, Israeli forces shot and wounded a 52-year-old Palestinian fisherman in a shooting attack off the northern shores of the Strip.
Earlier on May 19, the navy fired at boats near Rafah city, injuring two fishermen.
Palestinian fishermen are permitted to fish up to six nautical miles off the Gaza coast, according to rules set by Israeli authorities in 2012. Gaza has been under a joint Israeli-Egyptian blockade since June of 2007, causing a decline in the standard of living, as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.
Al Ray further reports that the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has said that life in the Gaza Strip has become unbearable beause of the the siege and the closure of crossings:
In a monthly report issued in Arabic, on Tuesday, the OIC appealed to Egyptian authorities to open Rafah crossing 24/7. According to the report, Egyptian authorities opened the crossing for only 11 days only since early 2014.
The organization said that a survey conducted through the besieged enclave found that 7,873 families have orphans, and that the number of orphans was 22,776, in near equal distribution between males and females.
Israeli aircraft raided the besieged enclave more than 15 times in April, causing considerable damage to 26 houses, 7 civilian cars, three plumping and blacksmithing workshops, and 18 head of cattle.
The report also stated that the amount of the Qatari fuel allowed via Kerem Shalom (Karam Abu Salem) crossing has been limited due to repeated closure of the crossing during Jewish holidays.
Humanitarian projects carried out in the Strip have also declined, due to the lack of finance.
According to Al Ray, about 13,000 Gazans are registered in the Interior Ministry records as travel seekers.
Egypt cites ‘security’ in the Sinai Peninsula and non-consensus among Palestinians as reasoning behind the reduction of working days for Rafah crossing.
It is Gaza’s sole connection to the outside world.