Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection

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What are the needs?

The occupation in the West Bank and the blockade of Gaza has provoked a long-lasting protection crisis with humanitarian consequences, especially in terms of access to health, water, education and livelihood opportunities, which in turn is increasing economic and social despair among Palestinians.

The Gaza blockade continues for the ninth year to impact the lives and livelihoods of all Gazans. There is a continuous undoing of economic development and increased vulnerability of the population. Nearly 80% of Gaza’s 1.8 million population receives some form of international aid, the bulk of which is food assistance. The summer 2014 hostilities resulted in the largest displacement recorded in Gaza since 1967. Since the hostilities, there has been little progress in the reconstruction of the totally destroyed houses, prolonging the suffering of internally displaced persons (IDPs).

The West Bank is home to some 2.6 million Palestinians who are suffering from progressive fragmentation and isolation, linked to their socio-economic vulnerability and exposure to protection threats. An estimated 300 000 of them live in Area C, and are considered the most vulnerable people in the West Bank as they are facing an ever growing pressure in terms of movement and access restrictions.

How are we helping?

The European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) has been providing humanitarian aid to help meet the basic needs of Palestinians in Palestine since 2000. The Commission's assistance currently targets 1.2 million Palestinians in Gaza and 300 000 in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The humanitarian aid budget is geared towards the delivery of assistance in an increasingly complex and volatile environment where respect for International Humanitarian Law and need for protection assistance are the entry point and crosscutting dimension in all actions.

In Gaza, the main sectors of intervention are health, water and sanitation, food (vouchers) and livelihoods, with a clear focus on emergency preparedness and response. In the West Bank, the Commission supports a multi-faceted response to demolitions and evictions, ranging from material to legal assistance to those families most exposed to the listed protection risks. The European Commission is also supporting humanitarian action coordination through the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).


* The designation of Palestine shall not be construed as recognition of a State of Palestine and is without prejudice to the individual positions of the Member States on this issue.

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