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Confusing situation for Gaza fishermen
Two articles on same day
[1]
Israeli Navy Attacks Palestinian Fishing Boats In Gaza
https://imemc.org/article/israeli-navy-attacks-palestinian-fishing-boats-in-gaza/

Israeli Navy Attacks Palestinian Fishing Boats In Gaza
April 2, 2019 1:20 PM IMEMC News Gaza City, Gaza Strip, Khan Younis, News
Report, Rafah 0

02 APR
1:20 PM
Israeli navy ships attacked, on Tuesday at noon, several Palestinian fishing
boats in the Central District of the besieged and impoverished Gaza Strip.

The head of the Palestinian Fishermen Union in Gaza, Zakariya Bakr, said the
navy chased several fishing boats less than twelve nautical miles from the
shore.

Bakr added that the navy sprayed the boats with waste-water mixed with
chemicals.

In related news, Egyptian navy ships surrounded a Palestinian fishing boat
nearly 250 meters away from Egyptian waters, before detaining three
fishermen, identified as Mos’ab Qannan, 23, Khaled Qannan, 26, and Ra’fat
Qanna, 43, from Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, and
confiscated their boat.

The Egyptian navy also detained another fisherman, identified as Soheib Abu
Salmiya, after opening fire at his boat, near Rafah, in southern Gaza.

====================================================
[2]
Gaza Fishing Zone Expanded as Part of Ceasefire Agreement
https://imemc.org/article/gaza-fishing-zone-expanded-as-part-of-ceasefire-agreement/

April 2, 2019 4:48 AM IMEMC News & Agencies Gaza Siege, Gaza Strip, News
Report, Refugees/Immigration, Truce 0

02 APR
4:48 AM
, in the besieged Gaza Strip, as part of a ceasefire agreement between
Israel and Hamas, who currently governs the enclave.

The Egyptian-brokered deal includes expanding the fishing limit along the
Mediterranean coast

Expansions occasionally occur and usually last for only three months at a
time, Al Ray reports

Since Israel imposed a land, aerial and naval blockade on Gaza, in 2007,
following Hamas’ election victory, Gaza’s fishing sector has declined and
its fishing exports have dwindled.

The widest range Israel has allowed, in the past 10 years, is 12 nautical
miles, and, at times, the limit was reduced to one nautical mile, Nizar
Ayash, the head of Gaza’s fishermen union, previously told Al Jazeera.

Under the Oslo Accords, signed in 1993, Israel is obligated to permit
fishing up to 20 nautical miles, but this has never been implemented.
Overfishing in a small area over the years has decreased the fish population
and depleted fish breeding grounds.

Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Jamjoom, reporting from Gaza, said that despite the
ease on restrictions, Monday’s weather forecast forced many fishermen to
quickly sail back to shore.

“It’s cloudy and it’s been raining heavily here in Gaza … The people who
assembled here say they need to go back into the water,” Jamjoom said.

“This is one of the few viable industries here. This is one of the few ways
which people in Gaza are able to make money,” he added.

‘More equipment’ needed
There are approximately 4,000 registered fishermen in the Gaza Strip,
operating some 1,000 boats. Limited access to raw materials has left most
boats lacking the necessary renovations needed to function at full
potential.

The profession has been deemed dangerous by rights organisations due to
Israel’s harassment of fishermen at sea.

Those who attempted to sail out into the water, on Monday morning, say they
are hopeful that this means they will be able to continue to do so, Jamjoom
said. But, at the same time, they say they still need “more equipment” for
their boats.

On Sunday, Israeli authorities also reopened two border crossings, a day
after tens of thousands of Palestinians demonstrated along the fortified
fence with Israel to mark the first anniversary of the Great March of Return
protests.

Four Palestinians were killed by Israeli gunfire and at least 207
Palestinians were wounded on Saturday, during the protests, Gaza’s health
ministry said.

The Karam Abu Salem commercial crossing and the Erez crossing with Gaza were
reopened six days after they were shut down amid an exchange of heavy fire
between Israel and Hamas.

Israel regularly seals off the two crossings which facilitate the movement
of Palestinians with hard-to-obtain Israeli permits, as well as goods and
services to Gaza’s nearly two million residents.

Since March 30th of last year, Palestinians in the Hamas-run Strip have been
demanding the right to return to lands from which their families were
violently expelled during the founding of Israel, in 1948. Protesters in the
weekly rallies are also calling for an end to the blockade.
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