Israel has
subject the Gaza Strip to a closure policy since 1991, however, its current,
most extreme form, has been applied continuously since 14 June 2007, following
the Hamas takeover of the Gaza Strip. Despite the effects of Operation Cast
Lead, the closure regime has been continuously applied. Today, the Gaza Strip
has been completely cut off from the outside world for over five continuous years. Palestinians
are not allowed to leave the territory, goods are not allowed to be exported,
and imports have been reduced to a very limited number of items in dramatically
insufficient quantities. The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip is enacted as a
form of collective punishment, termed ‘economic warfare’ by the Israeli
authorities. The current closure regime violates numerous principles of
international humanitarian law and international human rights law, inter
alia
Article 43 of the Hague Regulations, Articles 33, 55 and 56 of the
Fourth Geneva Convention, and the right to life, the right to the highest
attainable standard of living, the right to the highest attainable standard of
health, the right to freedom of movement, and the right to live in human
dignity.


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