This Gaza factory once made kids’ clothes. Now it makes protective suits

April 9th 2020

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Please sign up here to watch our forthcoming discussion panel on the impact Covid-19 is having on Palestine this Friday 1330 GMT.

With all the logistical and political challenges faced by Palestinians, we want to explore how the people of Gaza and the West Bank are coping at this unprecedented time. Medical supplies were already scarce, movement already restricted—what is the situation like now?

Join us to hear from experts as well as people on the ground. Panelists include Jonathan Cook, journalist and writer, based in Nazareth; Steve Sosebee, President & CEO of the Palestine Children's Relief Fund, in Ramallah; Yara Hawari, Palestine Policy Fellow with Al-Shabaka, in Palestine; Mohamed Omer, award winning journalist, joins us from Jordan and from the USA, Yara Asi, global health & development lecturer at the University of Central Florida. 

Mark Seddon, former UN correspondent for Al Jazeera English and media advisor to the UN will be moderating this event, the first produced by Palestine DeepDive.

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Here is today’s DeepDive:

This Gaza factory once made kids’ clothes. Now it makes protective suits (+972 Magazine)

When the new coronavirus reached Gaza, Alaa Qreiqea decided he would repurpose his children’s clothes factory to make protective suits. His workshop now produces about 400 suits a day, which are sold to essential workers inside the strip as well as in the West Bank and Israel.

The factory employs about 30 people, said Qreiqea, who is in his 20s and hails from the Shuja’ia neighborhood of Gaza City. Knowing that the laborers have families to support in this difficult time is what motivated him to keep the factory operational, he explained.

Gaza runs out of coronavirus tests, Palestinian health officials say (Jerusalem Post)

In a news briefing, the health ministry spokesman, Ashraf al-Qidra said dozens of samples were awaiting testing, and that hundreds of people would likely have to remain in quarantine facilities as a result.

He appealed to international organizations to provide Gaza with testing kits as well as 100 ventilators and 140 beds for intensive care units.

Hamas has closed schools, mosques and wedding halls and banned large street gatherings to halt the contagion's spread, but has not moved to impose a lockdown on Gaza's 2 million residents, saying it was not yet necessary.

Pandemic lays bare Israel’s systemic racism (Electronic Intifada)

“Israel had tested a mere 4,000 Palestinian citizens of Israel for the virus up to 2 April. This is the same as the number of Jewish Israelis tested every day. Public health and safety orders were in the beginning provided in Hebrew and sometimes Russian and English, but nothing in Arabic.”

Netanyahu, Gantz agree to press ahead with unity talks after Passover holiday (The Times of Israel)

“We informed them that we want a national emergency government, but not at any cost,” Gantz wrote.

Netanyahu told Radio 103FM that he is determined to establish an emergency unity government but annexation of parts of the West Bank was key for him.

On the matter of annexation, the sides decided that the government will act with the full agreement of the US and in talks with the international community, while preserving strategic interests and peace deals, an official with knowledge of the talk told The Times of Israel.

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