Economic pressure unites Fatah and Hamas

Beach Road, the main road along the sea in Gaza, is just one of 20 construction projects out of 300 that have been able to carry on building but it’s been staggered as materials have gradually been allowed in through Rafah border, open only several times a month – a process facilitated by the Qatari government.

The reconciliation deal between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas could be successful this time either out of Hamas’ sheer economic desperation, or from mounting pressure from the struggling people of Gaza.

A line of hotels on Beach Road are popular with journalists, humanitarian workers and diplomats, but the road is still not sealed. The golden Gaza sand mixed with dirt serves as the make-shift road and hotels surfaces have become just an extension of the beach.

Since the toppling of the Muslim Brotherhood last year the relatively good times for the people of Gaza have come to a standstill.  Egypt’s border patrol and army engineers have destroyed as many as 1,200 tunnels between the Sinai Peninsula and the Gaza Strip causing Hamas to lose $230 million in tax revenue from the tunnel operators.

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