The Gaza war has devastated the Strip's fragile economy, with flattened factories and hundreds of residents left unemployed. Jillian Kitchener reports.
This used to be a bustling ice cream factory. It's a victim of the Gaza war, like countless other factories in the region. And the owner says he's lost around 25 million U.S. dollars. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) OWNER OF AL-AWDA FACTORY, MOHAMMED AL-TALABANI, SAYING: "Around 400 to 450 employees worked in this factory. Now they have lost their jobs. Since the factory was demolished, these workers are now unemployed." The enclave's unemployment rate has soared and businesses face an uncertain future. The Gaza Chamber of Commerce estimates that 500 businesses have been struck by Israeli bombs and shells since fighting began in July. And many are now working in food distribution centers. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) GAZA RESIDENT, IZZAT AL-SAMOUNI, SAYING: "It's a bad and tough place to be. There is no electricity, no water and no work on the Gaza strip." With the ceasefire holding for now, Gazans are coming out of hiding and restocking food supplies. The ceasefire was renewed, Thursday, for five days.... with hopes that Israel and the Palestinians will come up with an agreement to end the devastating conflict.