Gaza City: In the war-torn Gaza Strip, a UN official called for a “real political process” on Sunday to prevent further bloodshed.
As tens of thousands of Gaza people are slowly trying to recover their lives, senior UN staff headed to the territory after Egypt reached a ceasefire agreement on Friday to end 11 consecutive days of mutual bombing. They warned that the violence caused a deep psychological state trauma.
On Sunday, in heavily damaged areas in Gaza, volunteers swept dust clouds at the foot of collapsed buildings, while others shoveled debris on the back of donkey carts.
Since May 10, Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip have killed more than 200 Palestinians, left thousands homeless, and caused waste to buildings and critical infrastructure in the blockade.
There have been three wars with Israel since 2008. This is the most recent bombing of a coastal area crowded with about 2 million people.
Philippe Lazzarini, head of the UN Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA, said the reconstruction needed to go hand in hand with efforts to create “a different political environment”.
“We need to have a genuine focus on human development,” on proper access to education, jobs and livelihoods, he said.
“But this needs to be accompanied by a genuine political process”.
Speaking earlier to a group of journalists, he said “the layers of hardship in Gaza keep getting thicker”, because the root causes of the conflict have not been addressed.