Oxfam: Israel Using Starvation as ‘Weapon of War’ Against Gaza Civilians

Just 2% of the food that would have been delivered to Gaza before the 'total siege' has been let in

The international charity group Oxfam has said Israel is using starvation as a “weapon of war” against Palestinian civilians living in Gaza, as barely any food is being delivered to the besieged enclave.

Gaza has been under blockade since 2007, and Israel imposed a “total siege” on October 9, cutting off all food, fuel, and medicine. A limited number of aid trucks have been allowed into Gaza from Egypt recently, but Oxfam said only 2% of the food that was previously delivered is going in.

“The international agency analyzed UN data and found that just 2% of food that would have been delivered has entered Gaza since the total siege,” Oxfam said in a press release. “While a small amount of food aid has been allowed in, no commercial food imports have been delivered.”

Oxfam said that prior to the total siege, 104 trucks a day delivered food to Gaza. Since the weekend, 62 trucks have been allowed to enter Gaza through Egypt, but only 30 were carrying food.

“The situation is nothing short of horrific—where is humanity? Millions of civilians are being collectively punished in full view of the world. There can be no justification for using starvation as a weapon of war,” said Sally Abi Khalil, Oxfam’s Middle East director.

Oxfam said Gaza is also virtually out of clean water, making some of the food that has been let in, such as rice and lentils, useless since people do not have clean water or fuel to prepare them. The group said Israeli airstrikes have hit bakeries and supermarkets, further straining the food supply. The electricity blackout and lack of fuel have also disrupted the supply of food.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.