Part 2 of 2
Eyeless in Gaza
During Israel’s military operation in Gaza in the winter of 2009, Anas lost partial eyesight when shrapnel fell inside his family home in Al Zarqa area of Gaza City, injuring him in the face. Now, at four years old, Anas is at risk of becoming completely blind unless he gets urgent medical treatment, only available outside Gaza. However, Anas, like many other patients, is still waiting for permission from Israel to travel for medical treatment that is not available in the Gaza Strip.
Anas’s father used to work in Israel but lost his job due to border closures. The family income is approximately 800 NIS per month (US$ 230). They can only afford vegetables and grains and must also use some of their meagre funds to buy drinking water. Despite Oxfam’s replacement of corroded water pipes, tap water is only available every second or third day, due to the limited power supplies in Gaza as a result of Israeli restrictions on fuel as part of the blockade. Even when water is available, it is suitable for domestic use but still undrinkable due to the contamination of the aquifer by chlorides and nitrates. This groundwater pollution means that 95% of municipal water supply in the blockaded Gaza Strip is not suitable for drinking.
A large part of the contamination is due to sewage infiltration into the aquifer and over extraction. Tackling both of these problems on a large scale requires new infrastructure, and the blockade of Gaza prevents or delays the essential imports of construction materials needed to complete projects such as waste water treatment plants and desalination plants.
The continuing restrictions on entry of construction materials means that houses cannot be built and infrastructure cannot be maintained or repaired. During ‘Operation Cast Lead’, which cost the lives of 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis, some 6,000 homes were completely destroyed or severely damaged, 18 schools were completely destroyed with more than 260 damaged, more than 50% of Gaza’s hospitals were damaged and some 30 km of water networks were destroyed.66 The direct material damage caused by ‘Operation Cast Lead’ is estimated at being around US$1.9 billion.67
This destruction, combined with high population growth rates, means that some 86,000 housing units are currently needed in the Gaza Strip, to improve dire housing conditions including over-crowding and risk of structural collapse.68 Some 40,000 children were unable to enrol in UNRWA schools at the beginning of the academic year because of the inability of UNRWA to bring construction materials for schools into Gaza.69 Already over 90% of UNRWA schools are running double shifts and thousands of students have had no option but to take their lessons inside shipping containers used as supplementary classrooms.70 Whilst a number of truckloads of water and sanitation items entered Gaza in the first quarter of 2011, primarily for two sewage treatment projects funded by the World Bank and German Government respectively, the lack of ability to rehabilitate damaged water infrastructure, coupled with frequent power cuts means that, as of April 2011, 25% of the Gaza Strip population is supplied with water once every four days, 40% of the population is supplied with water once every three days, 25% is supplied with water once every two days and 10% receive water once per day (all for 6-8 hrs at a time).71 Some 50 to 80 million litres of raw or partially treated sewage have been released daily into the Mediterranean Sea since January 2008.
The economic crisis in Gaza has led to households relying increasingly on women’s earnings. In addition it is usually women household members who go to local associations or international aid agencies to collect vouchers or food distributions. Women’s mobility is generally used as one of the indicators of greater empowerment. However, in this case, it could be misleading to use this as an indicator of their growing autonomy.
Female mobility could be based on their greater engagement in the economic sphere in the interests of accessing what might be termed ‘conditional’ aid. It appears that often men’s support for their wives to participate in activities organised by local associations depends on the likelihood of inclusion in for example, material assistance by those associations. Women themselves state that their increased role in generating household income is neither desirable nor a permanent change, but a result of household crisis due to the inability of the male members to remain the family breadwinners.72 They assert that the crisis has indeed created opportunities for them to leave the home and interact more actively in public life, but are concerned this would not continue were it not related to income generation for the well-being of the family.Inequality in Jerusalem
East Jerusalem was once the Palestinian economic, commercial, religious and cultural centre. Illegally annexed by Israel in 1967, East Jerusalem, wanted by Palestinians as the future capital of a future State, has been further isolated from the rest of the West Bank with the construction of the Wall, including from important satellite cities such as Bethlehem and Ramallah. Lack of access to the city for both Palestinians from Gaza and the West Bank and lack of ability to trade (there are restrictions on the import of dairy and agricultural produce from the West Bank to East Jerusalem) has led to the economic decline of the city. Between 1994 and 2007, some 280 shops closed in East Jerusalem, around 50 of which were in the Old City.73 The Wall is estimated as having cost over US$ one billion due to loss of income for Jerusalemites and it is estimated that the cost will continue to be US$194 million annually.74 The lack of job opportunities in East Jerusalem means that some 35% of Palestinian Jerusalemites work in Israel and the settlements.75 The isolation of Jerusalem has further prevented many Palestinians from being able to access schools, universities, hospitals (which provide specialised medical care not available in the rest of the West Bank or Gaza) as well as important religious sites.
Israel’s position that Jerusalem is its ‘undivided’ and ‘eternal’ capital conceals the stark inequalities that exist between Jerusalem’s Jewish and Palestinian residents. In East Jerusalem, 75.3% of Palestinian adults and 83.1% of Palestinian children live below the poverty line.76 Inequalities in municipal funding within Jerusalem itself means that Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem face a shortage of classrooms and between 4,329 and 5,300 Palestinian children in East Jerusalem do not attend school at all.77 Around half of East Jerusalem’s residents do not have legal water connections and a third are not connected to the sewage network contributing to the environmental degradation of Palestinian neighbourhoods and exacerbating risks to public health.78 In 2003, the Jerusalem Municipality implemented 608 plans for public infrastructure; 78.8% took place in Jewish neighbourhoods and illegal settlements and 21.2% in Palestinian areas of East Jerusalem.79 Most Palestinian Jerusalemites boycott municipal elections.
Whilst Israel continues to encourage its population to live in occupied East Jerusalem in violation of international law (around 190,000 settlers currently live in East Jerusalem)80 the demolition of Palestinian property and accompanying forced displacement continues. Some 692 buildings were demolished between the beginning of 2000 and April 2009.81 An estimated 28% of Palestinian owned structures are currently at risk of demolition due to the strict and discriminatory planning regime imposed on Palestinian construction which often obliges people to build ‘illegally’ to meet population growth and housing needs, placing 60,000 people at potential risk of displacement.82 Apart from the severe economic consequences for families that lose their homes, the documented social impact on the family is enormous. Some one third of parents are at risk of developing mental health disorders following a home demolition and children often show signs of trauma such as depression, anxiety and becoming withdrawn.83
Revocation of residency rights for Palestinians Jerusalemites who cannot prove their ‘centre of life’ is within Jerusalem’s municipal boundaries has also led to increased displacement. Those affected by this policy include many Palestinians who have been cut off from the centre of Jerusalem by the Wall, as well as those who have studied or worked abroad for a period of time. The Israeli human rights NGO B’Tselem found that between 2003 and 2009, the Ministry of Interior revoked the residency of 7,456 East Jerusalemites.84 One Palestinian woman from Jerusalem who studied for her Masters Degree in the UK and subsequently worked abroad for a number of years says:
Constraints to Economic Growth and the Politics of Aid
In 1996, I was working in Nicaragua and it was too difficult and complicated to return back to Jerusalem and so I asked my family to renew my exit permit that expired in August 1996 only to be told that my right of residence had been revoked. The reason given by the Israelis was that I had been away for too long and therefore ‘lost’ the right to reside in the city of my birth and my family. I felt so angry about this; it seems so wrong, why should the Israelis be able to deny me my rights to live in the city where me and my family were born and grew up in?85
Whilst the OPT as a whole has witnessed economic growth in recent years, this growth has been constrained in the absence of Palestinian sovereignty and territorial continuity and due to Israeli imposed restrictions on access to land and resources as well as on national and export markets. Such restrictions on movement and access prevent Palestinians from being able to engage in sustainable livelihood opportunities and benefit from international trade agreements. At the Ad Hoc Liasion Committee’s donor conference to the OPT on 13 April 2011, an agreement signed between the Palestinian Authorities’ Prime Minister Fayyad and Baroness Catherine Ashton, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, gave Palestinian agricultural products immediate duty free access to the EU market. However, the agreement, which also includes processed foods, fish and fishery products originating in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, will do little to help Palestinian farmers’ income if they can’t access their productive base or external markets. Further, the World Bank notes that growth does not appear to be sustainable, as it “reflects recovery from the very low base reached during the second Intifada and is still mainly confined to the non-tradable sector and primarily donor driven”.86
Aid levels to the OPT significantly increased in the period following Oslo: US$2.6 billion in 2008 which was a 1,350% increase to aid in 1993.87 Aid has been determined and allocated through the lens of state building and the peace process, instead of according to need.
The ‘neutrality’ and ‘impartiality’ of international aid to the OPT has also been questioned. When Hamas won the parliamentary elections in 2006, major donors stopped giving aid to the OPT. The economic boycott imposed by the Quartet and Israel (who previously suspended the transfer of tax and custom revenues it collects on behalf of the PA) saw poverty levels soar. In an Oxfam survey carried out in mid-March 2007 of 677 households from across the OPT, 81% of respondents in the West Bank and 87% of respondents in Gaza reported a reduction in household income. In Gaza 53% reported that their household income had been reduced by more than half, and 21% said their household income had ceased altogether. In order to cope with reduced income levels, households reported increased borrowing, the selling of their possessions, a reduction in healthcare and food consumption and taking their children out of school.88 One grocery shop owner from Madama village in the West Bank told Oxfam in January 2007, “Three months ago my shop closed. I could not continue because the debts of my customers became too great. This is the responsibility of the siege [financial sanctions] of the Palestinian government. Most of the villagers have not paid me the money they owe me. I sold my wife’s jewellery to open my shop- now I have lost everything.”89
Following Hamas’s takeover of the Gaza Strip and the establishment of two parallel governments, international donors followed the ‘West Bank First’ model, resuming funding to bolster the PA’s support and authority in the West Bank, further entrenching the territorial, political and socio-economic fragmentation of the OPT. By isolating Hamas through, among other things, its aid schemes, the international community has marginalised Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip and exacerbated the intra-Palestinian divide. Following the reconciliation of Palestinian factions in April 2011, it is hoped that the international community does not repeat the failed policies of 2006 and once again place sanctions on the unity government with potentially devastating consequences for Palestinians.
Since the Paris donor conference of 2007, aid has largely been given bilaterally to support the PA’s Palestinian Reform and Development Plan 2008-2010. Such bilateral funding does not reach the most vulnerable and marginalised groups, many of which reside in Area C of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza where the PA’s reach to provide access to services is severely restricted. Moreover, donors’ support is largely focused on reform of the governance and the security sectors of the PA whilst neglecting other sectors and essential services such as agriculture, health and education. Since 2007, the United States and the European Union have given almost US$450 million in assistance to the PA’s security sector.90 This resulted in a structural distortion in public expenditures, with security services representing 33% of public spending whereas health and education combined represented 29%.91 In 2009, donor support for the development of the agricultural sector was limited to less than one percent of total funds.92 The new National Development Plan 2011-2013, which is yet to be endorsed, still has high spending for the security sector (US$61,000,000) for 2011, compared to health (US$36,000,000) and education (approx. US$60,000,000). However, the total budget allocated to governance is expected to decrease from 28%-19% of the total budget over the two years with a corresponding increase in social service spending from 28% to 35%.93
The OPT is one of the largest recipients of humanitarian assistance in the world and the vast majority of funding for Gaza in particular is restricted to humanitarian aid. While such assistance is essential to mitigate the negative effects of conflict and occupation, it cannot be a substitute for Palestinian national self-determination nor a sustainable solution for communities’ development unless it is connected to the longer term development of agriculture and employment that could help lift the population out of poverty. Given the fact that humanitarian distributions and cash for work activities continue to be the preferred response to poverty and food insecurity within Gaza, aid dependency is growing at many levels, and as a result many people suffer from unpredictable income flows at household level. Oxfam’s experience working with Palestinians in Gaza shows that people want to work rather than receive aid but with the limited opportunities available to them, the majority are limited to cash for work activities (that normally give recipients low wage employment for one or two months), receiving vouchers for food or engaging in small-scale project activities that are inherently unsustainable. This has led to a real crisis of dignity for family members and negative socio-economic impacts on the household with the resultant disaffection and social exclusion. As one Gazan fisherman who benefited from an Oxfam Cash for Work project building agricultural roads said “I’m grateful for all the help me and my family receive, but I would rather you take a picture of me working on my boat, like my father, grandfather and great grandfather used to do.”94
The politicisation of international aid to the OPT has also made it challenging for humanitarian and development organisations to implement their programmes. The growing number of world-wide national and international bans on the provision of material or financial assistance to groups or governments designated as terrorists, such as Hamas, affect the provision of aid, including water and support for long-term livelihoods. Agencies in Gaza have had to modify their optimal response in order to comply with these bans. In addition, aid organisations (or the relevant authorities) are often prevented from implementing projects in areas of greatest need, due to Israeli restrictions on planning, building and infrastructure development in Area C and East Jerusalem, the lack of entry for materials in Gaza due to the blockade, and the lack of programming in the ‘buffer zone’. According to a survey carried out by the Association of International Development Agencies (AIDA), aid agencies have shifted from a needs-responsive to access-responsive programming, which is less effective or sustainable. For example 88% of AIDA members who operate in Gaza have modified their optimal response due to access restrictions; 87% in Area C.95 The destruction of donor funded infrastructure by the Israeli military (or sometimes settlers) does not often lead to donor calls for compensation or accountability. During ‘Operation Cast Lead’ alone, approximately €11.3 million of European Union funded infrastructure was destroyed, yet not one claim for compensation was filed.96
Ultimately the alleviation of poverty in the OPT will not be possible without tackling root causes. These include Israel’s policies of continued settlement expansion and accompanying land and water resource confiscation in the West Bank; the closure of the Gaza Strip; severe restrictions on movement and access throughout the OPT preventing viable agricultural and economic opportunity, including trade; demolitions of ‘illegally’ built structures in the West Bank (including Jerusalem), including donor funded projects. Above all else, only an end to the occupation and a durable and just resolution of the Israel-Palestine conflict can ensure a reduction in poverty, the fulfilment of human rights and security for both Palestinian and Israeli citizens alike.Endnotes
1 IMF and The World Bank 2011, recent reports.
2 The UN Committee on Economic 2001.
3 UNCTAD 2010 and IMF 2011.
4 Development Initiatives 2010.
5 IMF 2011.
6 UNCTAD 2010.
7 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics 2011. In 2010, the Palestinian poverty line for a household of two adults and three children was 2,237 NIS (US$609) and the deep poverty line was 1,783 NIS (US$478) per month.
8 World Bank, West Bank and Gaza Update 2011.
9 World Bank 2011.
10 WB, West Bank and Gaza Update, (March 2011).
15 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics 2011.
16 FAO 2011.
17 WFP and FAO 2010.
18 IMF 2011.
19 Said Janan 2010, cited in Oxfam.
20 World Bank 2010.
21 UN OCHA 2010.
22 Save the Children Alliance 2010.
23 WFP and FAO 2010.
24 Save the Children UK 2009.
25 WFP and FAO 2010.
26 UN OCHA 2010.
27 UNRWA, UNICEF and WFP 2010.
30 Displacement Working Group OPT 2010.
31 Statement by the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for the OPT 2011.
32 Palestinian National Authority, Ministry of Agriculture 2010.
33 B’Tselem 2011.
35 Save the Children UK 2009.
38 B’Tselem 2011.
40 EWASH 2010.
41 World Bank 2008.
42 UN OCHA 2011.
43 Sharif Omar 2009, cited in Oxfam.
44 World Bank 2008.
45 UNRWA, UNICEFand WFP 2010.
46 Youssef Salim, Olive Farmer and Beit Jala 2010, cited in Oxfam.
47 Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions & Stop the Wall 2009.
48 BBC News 2007.
49 Knickmeyer 2008.
50 International Committee of the Red Cross 2010.
51 Oxfam 2011.
52 Sorcha et al.2009.
53 Crisis Action 2011.
55 Europe Aid 2009.
56 UNEP 2009.
57 FAO 2010.
58 UN OCHA 2010.
59 Save the Children UK 2009.
61 FAO 2010.
62 UN OCHA 2010.
63 FAO 2010. 64 The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) considers that fishermen with a monthly income of US$100-190 are poor, while those earning less than US$100 a month are very poor. According to Oxfam’s partner, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), fishermen in Gaza used to economically support almost 40,000 people, including mechanics, fishmongers and thousands of local fishing families.
65 Oxfam 2010.
66 Save the Children UK 2009.
67 CIDSE 2009.
68 Crisis Action 2011.
71 EWASH 2011.
72 Oxfam 2009.
73 OCHA 2007.
74 Palestinian Authority Jerusalem Unit 2010.
76 EU 2010.
77 The Association for Civil Rights in Israel & ir amin 2010.
78 EWASH 2011.
79 Margalit 2006.
80 EU 2010.
81 PA Jerusalem Unit, Office of the President 2010.
82 UN OCHA 2009.
83 Save the Children UK 2009.
84 B’Tselem 2010.
85 Interview conducted by Oxfam partner the Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counselling (WCLAC) on 9 February 2010. The name of the interviewee is withheld.
86 World Bank 2011.
87 Governance and Social Development Resource Centre 2010.
88 Oxfam 2007.
89 Qot 2007, cited in Oxfam.
90 Sayigh 2011.
91 Turner 2010.
92 Palestinian National Authority, Ministry of Agriculture 2010.
93 Palestinian National Authority 2011.
94 Oxfam 2010.
95 AIDA 2011.
96 CIDSE 2009.REFERENCES
AIDA (Association of International Development Agencies). 2011. “Restricting Aid: The Costs of Delivering Assistance in the OPT”
B’Tselem. 2011. “Dispossession & Exploitation: Israel’s policy in the Jordan Valley & northern Dead Sea”
BBC News. 2007. “Israelis declare Gaza Hostile”. 19 September, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7002576.stm
Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions & Stop the Wall. 2009. “Rights without Remedy: The impact of Israel’s illegal Wall in the occupied Palestinian territory on the human rights of the Palestinian people, five years after the Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice”
CIDSE. 2009. “The EU’s aid to the occupied Palestinian territory (II): The deepening crisis in Gaza”
Crisis Action. 2011. “Dashed Hopes: Continuation of the Gaza Blockade”
Development Initiatives. 2010. “Global Humanitarian Assistance Report 2010”.
EU (European Union). 2010. “Heads of Mission Report on East Jerusalem”
Europe Aid. 2009. “Final Report: Damage assessment and needs identification in the Gaza Strip”
EWASH (Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene). 2009. “Fact Sheet 1: The impact of the blockade on water and sanitation in Gaza”
EWASH (Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene). 2010. “Fact Sheet 2: Water Resources in the West Bank”
EWASH (Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene). 2011. “Briefing: Water and Sanitation in East Jerusalem”
EWASH (Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene). 2011. “WASH Cluster oPt, Monthly Situation Report”
FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation). 2010. “Farming without land, Fishing without water: Gaza Agriculture Sector Struggles to Survive”
FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation). 2011. “Palestinian Women’s Associations and Agricultural Value Chains”
Governance and Social Development Resource Centre. 2010. “Helpdesk Research Report: Role of Aid in the Occupied Palestinian Territories”
IMF (International Monetary Fund) and WB (World Bank). 2011. Recent reports to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee’s donor conference to the OPT.
IMF (International Monetary Fund). 2011. “Macroeconomic and Fiscal Framework for the West Bank and Gaza: Seventh Review of Progress”. Staff report for the meeting of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee
International Committee of the Red Cross. 2010. “Gaza Closure: Not Another Year!”
Knickmeyer, E. 2008. “Israeli ‘Economic Warfare’ to Include Electricity Cuts in Gaza”. The Washington
Margalit, M. 2006. “Discrimination in the Heart of the Holy City, International Peace and Cooperation Centre”
Oxfam. 2010. “Fishing without sea in Gaza”. Podcast
Oxfam. 2009. “Oxfam research into social mobility of women within Gaza”. Unpublished report.
Oxfam. 2009. Sharif Omar, Farmer from Jayyous “Five years of illegality: Time to dismantle the Wall and respect the rights of Palestinians”. Cited in Oxfam
Oxfam. 2010. Said Janan. “The road to olive farming: Challenges to developing the economy of olive oil in the West Bank”. Cited in Oxfam
Oxfam. 2010. Salim, Youssef, Olive Farmer and Beit Jala. “The road to olive farming: Challenges to developing the economy of olive oil in the West Bank”. Cited in Oxfam
Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. 2010. “Poverty in the Palestinian Territory”. Press Release
Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. 2011. “On the Occasion of the eighth of March, The International Women’s Day 2011”. Press Release
Palestinian National Authority, Ministry of Agriculture. 2010. “Agriculture Sector Strategy: A shared vision”
Palestinian National Authority, Ministry of Agriculture. 2010. “Agriculture Sector Strategy: A shared vision”
Palestinian National Authority. 2011. “National Development Plan 2011-2013: Establishing the State, Building our Future”
Post, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... 02062.html
Qot, S. 2007. “Poverty in Palestine: the human cost of the financial boycott”. Cited in Oxfam
Save the Children UK, the Palestinian Councelling Centre and Welfare Association 2009. “Broken Homes: Addressing the impact of house demolitions on Palestinian children and their families”
Save the Children UK. 2009. “Child rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory”
Save the Children UK. 2009. “Fact Sheet: Jordan Valley”
Sayigh, Y. 2011. “Policing the People, Building the State: Authoritarian Transformation in the West Bank and Gaza”. Carnegie Middle East Centre
Sorcha, O., S. Jaspars and P. Sara. 2009. “Losing Ground: Protection and Livelihoods in the Occupied Palestinian Territory”. ODI Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG) Working Paper
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel & ir amin. 2010. “Failed Grade: The Education System in East Jerusalem”
Turner, M. 2010. "The limits of peace building under occupation: an analysis of the Palestinian Reform and Development Plan”. Power Point Presentation presented during the discussion, Conference ‘Geographies of Aid Intervention in Palestine’, Beirzeit University, 27 September
UN Committee on Economics. 2001. “Social and Cultural Rights”. para.8.
UNOCHA (United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs). 2007. “The Humanitarian Impact of the West Bank Barrier on Palestinian Communities: East Jerusalem”
UNOCHA (United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs). 2009. “The Planning Crisis in East Jerusalem: Understanding the phenomenon of “illegal” construction”
UN OCHA (United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs). 2010. “Between the fence and a hard place: The humanitarian impact of Israeli-imposed restrictions on access to land and sea in the Gaza Strip”
UN OCHA (United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs). 2010. “Occupied Palestinian Territory, Mid-Year Review”. Consolidated Appeal
UN OCHA (United Nations Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs). 2011. “East Jerusalem: Key Humanitarian Concerns”
UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development). 2010. “NCTAD assistance to the Palestinian people: Developments in the economy of the occupied Palestinian territory”. p. 4
UNCTAD (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development). 2010. “Report on UNCTAD assistance to the Palestinian people: Developments in the economy of the occupied Palestinian territory”.
UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme). 2009. “Environmental Assessment of the Gaza Strip following the escalation of hostilities in December 2008-January 2009”
WB (World Bank). 2008. “The economic effects of restricted access to land in the West Bank”
WB (World Bank). 2011. “Building the Palestinian State: Sustaining Growth, Institutions, and Service Delivery”. Economic Monitoring Report to the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee
WFP (World Food Programme) and FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization). 2010. “Socio-Economic and Food Security Survey: West Bank and Gaza Strip, Occupied Palestinian Territory”