Palestinians protest against expanding of Jewish settlements

A man holding a Palestinian flag protests as he sits in the scoop of an Israeli excavator as he tries to prevent it from clearing his land during a protest against Jewish settlements, near the village of Deir Qaddis near the West Bank city of Ramallah.  
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Palestinian flag raised outside U.N.

Even though Palestine is not a member of the United Nations, the General Assembly adopted a resolution that permits non-member observer states to fly their flags alongside those of full members.

UN report warns Gaza may become ‘uninhabitable by 2020

Gaza could be “uninhabitable” in less than five years if current economic trends continue, according to a new United Nations report. The report released on Tuesday by the UN Conference on Trade and Development points to the eight-year economic blockade of Gaza as well as the three wars there over the past six years.
Last year’s Israeli war on Gaza displaced half a million people and left parts of the strip destroyed. 
The war “has effectively eliminated what was left of the middle class, sending almost all of the population into destitution and dependence on international humanitarian aid,” the new report says. 
Gaza’s GDP dropped 15 percent last year, and unemployment reached a record high of 44 percent. Seventy-two percent of households are food insecure.
The wars have shattered Gaza’s ability to export and produce for the domestic market and left no time for reconstruction, the report says. It notes that Gaza’s “de-development,” or development in reverse, has been accelerated. Israel and Egypt have maintained a blockade of Gaza since the armed group Hamas seized control of the territory in 2007.
“The humanitarian catastrophe is man-made. The answer is only through are man-made policies,” Hamdi Shaqqura, the deputy director of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, told Al Jazeera. Shaqqura said that donations from the international community have been “very useful”, but need to be coupled with “real political policies” to effectively help Gaza.
“The answer to Gaza is not dumping money into it. We have great potentials in Gaza for economic policies. What hinder economic development is merely Israeli policies, the closure (blockade) and other restrictions imposed on Gaza.”Gaza remains unders siege a decade after Israel’s withdrawal
A year after the war on Gaza, less than 2 percent of the required materials have been allowed into Gaza.
The report comes as Egyptian military bulldozers press ahead with a project that effectively would fill Egypt’s border with the Gaza Strip with water and flood the last remaining cross-border underground smuggling tunnels, which have brought both commercial items and weapons into Gaza.
The report calls the economic prospects for 2015 for the Palestinian territories “bleak” because of the unstable political situation, reduced aid and the slow pace of reconstruction.
Source: Al Jazeera and agencies

The Hamas-run Liberation Camps, in Gaza City

A Palestinian boy wearing a military costume arrives at a military-style graduation ceremony for Palestinian youths who were trained at one of the Hamas-run Liberation Camps, in Gaza City.

Head of Fatah in Gaza supporters

Palestinian supporters of former head of Fatah in Gaza, Mohammed Dahlan, hold posters depicting Dahlan (R) during a protest against Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Gaza City

A Palestinian woman, who fled her house during an Israeli offensive, holds her sleeping son

A Palestinian woman, who fled her house during an Israeli offensive, holds her sleeping son after breakfast inside a classroom at a United Nations-run school sheltering displaced Palestinians in Jabaliya refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip

A Palestinian man, who fled his house during an Israeli offensive, rests at a United Nations-run school

A Palestinian man, who fled his house during an Israeli offensive, rests at a United Nations-run school, sheltering displaced Palestinians, in Jabaliya refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip