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Palestinian banks in Gaza close as Israel blocks delivery of funds

July 2, 2012

Friday, December 5. 2008
The Palestinian Monetary Authority in Gaza announced on Thursday that all Palestinian banks in the Gaza Strip will be forced to shut down due to the authority’s inability to deliver funds to the besieged Gaza Strip.

In a statement, emailed to IMEMC, Minister of the Authority, Dr. Jihad Alwazir, stated that funds are ready to be transferred, but due to Israel’s ban on sending funds to Gaza, the authority is unable to ensure those funds. ” Due to such conditions, all Gaza branches of Palestinian banks are forced to close on Thursday, while the Monetary Authority will be exerting every possible effort to ensure the funds as the Palestinians mark major holidays in few days time”, the minister made clear.

The statement also indicated that the Monetary Authority has contacted various worldwide bodies, including the World Bank, the Quartet Committee and the Israeli Central Bank, in order to solve the standoff. The standoff will affect thousands of Gaza government employees who receive monthly salaries from the West Bank based Palestinian government.

For more than a week now, Israel continues to ban delivery of Israeli Shekels and U.S dollars to Gaza banks, apparently within the framework of Israeli measures against the Gaza Strip.

In June 2007, Israel enforced a crippling blockade on Gaza after the Islamist Hamas party took over the region amidst factional fighting with the Fatah party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Early last month, Israel imposed restrictive closures on the Gaza Strip under the pretext of homemade shell fire into Israel. The closure came after Gaza retaliated with home made shell fire into Israel after Israel invaded Gaza, despite an Egyptian-brokered six-month ceasefire deal.

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