Israel expected to ease Gaza blockade

JERUSALEM — Israel is likely to significantly ease the land blockade
of Gaza in coming days in an effort to blunt the international outcry
over its deadly raid on a blockade-busting flotilla, officials said

Israel has been scrambling to find ways to ease the
embargo and its own growing international isolation.

Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened senior ministers and security
officials to discuss changes but they failed to reach a decision. They
are now expected to vote Thursday, said a meeting participant speaking
on condition of anonymity because the talks were closed.

said Israel is expected to greatly ease what gets into Gaza through
land crossings. However, the naval blockade that was at the root of the
May 31 raid will remain intact because Israel wants to ensure weapons
can’t be shipped into Gaza. The officials spoke on condition of
anonymity because the policy has not been approved.

For the most
part, only basic humanitarian goods have been allowed into Gaza for the
past three years. Items including metal, glass and cement are barred
because Israel fears militants could use those to build weapons or
fortifications. But these goods are badly needed to rebuild homes and
businesses after Israel’s brief war with Gaza last year.

will now come up with a shorter list of restricted… >>>

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