Heavy rain and cold temperatures are hitting hard many Palestinians

Heavy rainfall and extreme cold are hitting the Gaza Strip region very hard, and the situation is getting worse for many Gazans living in precarious conditions. Weather forecasters said on Thursday heavy rains and strong wing, accompanied by a cold wave, will hit region, which is not new to extreme weather phenomena. Heavy storms had been hitting badly the Gaza Strip in the last three years, and thousands of residents were evacuated due to massive floods.

Local authorities said the extreme cold could lead to humanitarian disasters, due to a shortage of fuel and poor infrastructures. In the Gaza Strip several families live in makeshift houses or houses sheltering, and fearing the floods hundreds have already left their homes in many parts of the Strip.

Rescue teams were ready to deal with the natural disaster, and using fishing boats they were able to move residents to safe places, said the Palestinian Ministry of Works.

Gaza Strip’s residents are living in desperate state due to poor economic conditions, and Israeli media warned that the severe deterioration of living standards may lead to another war.

The situation in the Gaza Strip deteriorated since Israeli military offensives damaged sewage, water and communication infrastructures, while Israeli authorities don’t allow the import of many machinery, including pipes, pumps and steel cables.

“The world will recognize the state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital”, said Turkish Prime Minister

“In the near future, the entire world will recognize the state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital, and this problem will cease to exist”, said the Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım on Saturday, during a speech at a Justice and Development (AK) Party event in the northwestern province.

“Both the Muslim world and the Christian world, in short humanity, looked out for the rightful cause of the Palestinians, which has been going on for years”, he added.

Since 6 December, thousands of Palestinians took to the streets of Gaza every day to protest against President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Many Arab leaders rejected Trump’s move, while European Union’s High Representative Francesca Mogherini said Europe will not follow the United States. “The European Union has a clear and united position. We believe the only realistic solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine is based on two states and with Jerusalem as the capital of both”, said Mogherini in a press conference on 7 December.

Few days ago, during a visit in Riyadh, Binali Yıldırım  and Salman bin Abdulaziz invited the Islamic world to”act with unity” against the US decision and “emphasised the importance of Jerusalem’s status”.

During Saturday conference, the Turkey PM announced the resumption of US-Turkey visa services after nearly two months. “Relations have moved one step further towards normalization. The visa issue has finally been resolved”, said  Yıldırım.

Trump recognises Jerusalem as Israel’s capital: reactions from the Arab world

Donald Trump Trump Warning Dementia

On Wednesday 6 December Donald Trump declared Jerusalem as capital of Israel, shattering decades of unwavering US neutrality on Jerusalem and triggering the rage of all Palestinians as well as the condemnation of the Arab leaders.

The United Nation and the European Union rejected the declaration and the Hamas leader said it “is a war declaration and opens the gates of hell”, while Netanyahu welcomed Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Protests have erupted in Gaza and some Palestinians burned pictures of President Trump and switched off Christmas lights at Jesus’ traditional birthplace in Bethlehem. At the moment there’s no sign of violence but worries of a new intifada are on the rise.

In the Arab world many leader rejected the Trump’s declaration. In Qatar the Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdurrahman Al-Sani called the decision a ‘death sentence for peace’; Bahrain’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a written statement which says the decision threatens the peace process in the Middle East; in Tunisia the Ennahda movement also stressed that the decision is a violation of international decisions and Tunisian labour union said Jerusalem decision a ‘declaration of war’; Algeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs also denounced the move and warned the U.S. saying that this is a dangerous step. Similar statements were made by Jordan’s government spokesman Mohammad al-Momani, by Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, by Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri, and the Saudi Arabia’s Royal Council also strongly condemned the decision with a written statement.

However, the announcement wouldn’t destroy the America’s Arab alliances. As Shadi Hamid writes on the Atlantic, “most Arab countries won’t care much about Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital” as “They all share, along with the Trump administration, a near obsession with Iran as the source of the region’s evils”.

Trump’s historic declaration will probably have an impact on Gaza and the nearby regions but it will not be enough to compact all Arabs countries and make them forget the old rivalries in the region.