The Palestinian Farmers Union (PFU) via Via Campesina the International Peasant Farmers Movement – 2009-01-25 22:27:43
RAMALLAH, Gaza Strip (January 15, 2009) — The fierce Israeli attack against Gaza Strip has lead to the destruction of all sectors, starting from human beings till stone; this attack has lead to a complete destruction of the agriculture sector facilities starting from land bulldozing to irrigation networks till trees uprooting and crops damages, the demolish of Green houses and variety of livestock shelter.
Noting that Gaza Strip has a total of 70,000 dunums (17,297 acres) of agricultural land with the capacity up to produce 280,000 to 300,000 tons of agricultural products annually, one-third of these products are crops for export.
The agricultural sector provides permanent and temporary jobs for more than 40000 people in the Gaza Strip (representing 12.7% of the workforce) and provides food and life for a quarter of the population living in the Gaza Strip. Since the imposition of the comprehensive siege on the Gaza Strip the occupation prevented the export of any products, including the agricultural products, the occupation had also prohibited to enter any seeds, fertilizers and other agricultural inputs, which led to significant losses for agricultural sector as the initial estimations since June until the end of February 2008 are more than $85 million.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture data, the average of the daily losses due to farmers inability to export their products is $150,000 dollars daily, which means the total losses resulting from the inability to export during the past month is up to $42 million, about 25000 tons of potatoes and more of 10000 tons of other crops were damaged or sold in the domestic market at lower prices than export prices (local prices were 10% to 15% less than export prices).
While crops farmers faced direct losses from selling their products in local markets and farmers were affected by the flooding of the local market in which goods were destined for export, and it is expected that the total products in the last season to about 20% to 30% less than the previous season, with an estimated monthly loss of 10 million dollars a month.
The estimated number of workers in this season more than 7500 farms dependent production of approximately $14 million dollars in the whole export, where the cultivated area of 3130 dunums of agricultural land, cloves, strawberry and tomato.
On the other hand, as a direct result of the occupation restricting procedures on the movement of the fishing sector, the estimated monthly loss for more than 3,000 fishing workers is 3 million dollars.
In addition to that the remaining of the agricultural sector after the siege was destroyed throughout the fierce war waged by Israeli occupation forces is conducting Gaza Strip, which has been classified as a genocide war. PFU teams in Gaza Strip could, in spite of the difficult conditions our people are facing there, monitor a part of those losses, which are able to increase each moment, these losses are classified as the following:
Type of Losses
1 – fruitful trees (citrus, olives, and fruit): 5150 Dunums (1273 acres)
2 – irrigation networks: 5150 Dunums (1273 acres)
3 – Completely destroyed agricultural greenhouses: 450 Dunums (111 acres)
4 – completely destroyed greenhouses of the agricultural land liberated (settlements previously): 700 Dunums (173 acres)
5 – partially destroyed agricultural greenhouses: 225 Dunums (55.5 acres)
6 – main water pipelines for irrigation purposes: 110 mm: 47,500 meters
7 – Completely destroyed water wells: 185 wells
8 – A complete destruction of cement pools for gathering water: 230 pools
9 – Bulldozing grain crops: 4900 Dunums (1211 acres)
10 – Non-protected vegetable crops: 4450 Dunums (1100 acres)
11 – The destruction of poultry farms
(the average of each farm is 100-500 hens): 175 farms
12 – A complete destruction of cattle and sheep farms (the average of farms is between 5-200 heads): 285 farms
13 – A complete destruction of rabbit farms: 85 farms
14 – duck farms: 15 farms
15 – water tanks 1000 – 1500 L: 680 tanks
16 – Warehouse to store agricultural tools: 125 warehouses
17 – Destroyed tree nurseries: 16 nurseries
18 – Agricultural Roads: 75 km (46.6 miles)
19 – strawberry crops: 2000 Dunums (494 acres)
20 – 30 Martyrs were killed while working in their lands
Therefore, We appeal to Arabic and foreign Farmers Unions in all over the world and all our friends and international Development organizations to raise funds to help us to rebuild what was destroyed by Israeli war machine, especially in the fields of the agricultural sector infrastructure mentioned in the above table, and we in the Palestinian Farmers Union, announce the continuation of emergency state, as PFU teams in all the sites of Gaza Strip districts started the work on documenting the sizes of losses which are increasing every hour by the act of the Israeli aggression.
During the upcoming days we will provide you the new statistics that we will gather through the PFU campaign working teams and volunteers in Gaza Strip.
PFU has open a special bank account for the campaign to contribute in rebuilding what has been destructed of the agricultural sector
Our bank account is:
Bank of Palestine Ltd
Ramallah Branch Ramallah- Gaza, West Bank, Palestinian Territories
Swift code: PALSPS22
Routing No: 89-458
Name of accountholder Palestinian Farmers Union
Account number: 0214358 sub account 8 (Euro or dollar)
Address: Ramallah, West Bank,
00970/the West Bank/ Ramallah
Phone: + 970 22971354-
Fax: + 970 2 2971358
Our USD Correspondent:
JPMorgan Chase Bank
New York, U.S.A
Swift code: CHASUS33
Where To Send Money To Help The People Of Gaza
Disasters Emergency Committee
“Gaza Crisis Appeal”
PO Box 999, London EC3A 3AA or go to any UK Post Office quoting Freepay number: 1210
Cheque or Money Order made payable to “DEC Gaza Crisis”