International reports indicate that 350,000 housing units were completely or partially destroyed in Gaza (French)

The head of the Palestine Investment Fund, Muhammad Mustafa, said that rebuilding housing units in Gaza will require at least $15 billion, highlighting the extent of the devastation caused by Israel’s war on the besieged Strip.

Mustafa explained that international reports indicate that 350,000 housing units were completely or partially destroyed in Gaza, adding that assuming that 150,000 of them will need to be rebuilt at an average cost of $100,000 per unit, this means $15 billion for housing units.

He added during the World Economic Forum in Davos, "We have not yet touched on the infrastructure, the hospitals that were damaged, or the networks."

The Palestine Investment Fund, based in Ramallah, is part of the Palestinian Authority.

Reconstruction costs

The figure indicates that the reconstruction costs will greatly exceed the amounts spent to rebuild Gaza after previous wars, and the war has not yet ended since it broke out more than 3 months ago.

Following Israel's war on the Gaza Strip in 2014, which lasted 7 weeks and resulted in the death of 2,100 Palestinians, Qatar spent more than a billion dollars on housing and relief projects in Gaza.

The Israeli occupation army destroyed most of the Palestinian Strip in a war that led to the martyrdom of 24,448 Palestinians since its beginning on October 7, 2023.

Figures issued by the Information Office in Gaza show that more than 360,000 housing units were severely or partially damaged, and more than 70,000 housing units were completely destroyed.

Mustafa said that, in the short term, the Palestinian Authority will continue to focus on humanitarian aid such as food and water, but the focus will eventually shift to reconstruction.

Risk of famine

The war led to the displacement of most of the Gaza Strip's 2.3 million residents from their homes, some of whom were displaced several times, and created a humanitarian crisis with a decrease in food, fuel, and medical supplies.

"If the war continues in the Gaza Strip, hunger will likely claim more lives than would have been killed in the war," Mustafa said.

He added that the first steps must be the return of food, medicine, water and electricity to the besieged Strip.

Mustafa pointed out that the reconstruction efforts will be huge and the financial needs are great. He said that money will not solve the Gaza problem, and that it needs a political solution.

In response to a question about the role he believes the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) can play in the future, Mustafa said, “The best way forward is for the matter to include all sects as much as possible.”

Source: Reuters