Report No. 82

Implementation of the Agreement on Movement and Access

and Update on Gaza Crossings

(24 Dec 08 –  06 Jan 2009)

The United Nations is submitting the 82nd bi-weekly report on the implementation of the 15 November 2005 Agreement on Movement and Access (AMA)1, covering the period 24 Dec 08 – 06 Jan 2009 (Annex)2. In light of the closure of Gaza, this report also monitors movement and access through other crossings not included in the AMA.

Summary:

AMA Benchmarks:

Rafah crossing has remained closed for the movement of people for 577 working days. It was last opened on 09 June 2007. However, the crossing was exceptionally and partially open on eight days during the reporting period, allowing 328 Palestinians, including many medical cases, to cross out and 290 to cross in. Rafah crossing was partially open on five days for the entry of humanitarian medical supplies – 17 truckloads of medical supplies were allowed in during the reporting period.
Karni crossing has remained closed since 12 June 2007 for the movement of goods in and out of Gaza.  The conveyor belt/chute for cereals, animal feed was open on one day (26 December), compared to four days in the previous reporting period. A total of 43 truckloads of cereals, animal feed, entered Gaza, via the one lane, compared to 153 in the previous reporting period. Neither gravel nor bulk cement were allowed entry during this period. Gravel and bulk cement were last allowed into Gaza on 26 and 29 Oct 08 respectively.
Erez crossing has remained closed for more than two years since March 2006 for workers, and more than a year, since 12 June 2007, for all other Palestinians, except for a limited number of Palestinian traders, aid workers and medical cases who have been granted special permits. For these persons, Erez crossing was partially open on 12 out of the 14 scheduled days. No traders were allowed out during the reporting period and an average of 3 medical cases were allowed to cross out on every open day.
Obstacles to movement in the West Bank has increased from 621 reported during the previous reporting period to 626. Overall, the figure of 626 represents an increase of 250 obstacles (66.5%) over the baseline figure (376) of August 2005.

Convoys between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank:

Truck convoys – Implementation now 35 months overdue (since mid-January 2006).
Bus convoys – Implementation now 36 months overdue (since mid-December 2005).

Ports:

Seaport – Awaiting GoI assurance of non-interference with the seaport operation.
Airport – Awaiting commencement of discussions since November 2005.

Non-AMA Crossings:

Sufa crossing remained closed during the whole reporting period. It was last opened on 12 Sept 08.
Kerem Shalom crossing was open on eight days compared to five days during the previous reporting period. A total of 544 truckloads including 308 for humanitarian aid agencies were allowed in compared to 210 reported during the previous reporting period.
Nahal Oz crossing was partially open on two out of 12 scheduled days compared to four days during the previous reporting period. No petrol or diesel for public use was allowed entry (Only 92,000 lit of diesel were allowed entry for UNRWA). 123 tonnes of cooking gas (61 tonnes/ open day – 4% of the actual need) and 643,400 liters of industrial gas for the power plant (321,700 lit/open day – 10% of the actual need) were allowed entry.
Of note: Overall, 604 truckloads, including 325 truckloads from humanitarian agencies (including 17 through Rafah crossing), were allowed entry to Gaza during this period, nearly double the number compared to 363 truckloads allowed in during the previous reporting period.

Notes

1 The United Nations, through the OCHA oPt office, has assumed reporting responsibilities for reporting on the implementation of the AMA since April 2006.

2 The AMA was negotiated by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, between the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority to promote peaceful economic development and improve the humanitarian situation on the ground. It represents the commitments of both the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority to facilitate access and movement into/out and throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip.