Qatar Charity (QC), in co-operation with the Ministry of Agriculture in the Gaza Strip, has launched a project to cultivate agricultural land in an effort to support Palestinian farmers facing tough farming conditions.
The project includes the cultivation of 7,750 acres of agricultural land allocated in the Gaza Strip, which is worth QR910,466 and will benefit 200 farmers, QC has said in a statement.
Mohamed Abu Haloub, director of the Qatar Charity office in the Gaza Strip, and Samir Mutair, chairman of the Electricity Distribution Company, signed an agreement to start implementing the first phase of the agricultural land cultivation project, which includes the provision of eight electrical transformers.
The transformers will supply 42 wells with power to irrigate more than 7,500 acres of agricultural land.
The project includes the cultivation of 7,750 acres of agricultural land allocated in the Gaza Strip.
The second phase of the project will involve the operation of a well through renewable energy. It is to be implemented within two months to help pump water to irrigate more than 150 acres of land.
The second and final phase deals with the cultivation of more than 100 acres and planting fruit trees, according to QC.
Abu Halub said one of the main objectives of the project is to support farmers who are affected in the Gaza Strip and to encourage local agriculture to attain self-sufficiency as far as basic crops are concerned.
Abu Halub stressed the importance of contributing to reducing unemployment rates by providing job opportunities for farmers and those who work in the agricultural sector.
In addition, the project will help improve the rates of food security among Gazans by providing vegetables at reasonable prices.
On his part, Adel Attallah, representative of the Ministry of Agriculture, expressed happiness at Qatar's interest in the agricultural sector in Gaza, considering the importance of the sector for people trapped under the siege for more than 11 years.
"Agriculture is an important source of employment for farmers and those who work in the agricultural sector, and it is also a major source of the Palestinian national income. We welcome the efforts of Qatar Charity and are always striving to strengthen this partnership,” Attallah said.
He noted that the importance of cultivating agricultural land, through Qatar Charity’s initiatives, lies in reducing the high cost incurred by farmers as a result of operating agricultural wells by fuel due to the lack of electrical energy sources.
Further, he said the project will help compensate farmers for the huge loss they have suffered as a result of the destruction of large areas of highly fertile agricultural land, and those who have been denied access to their land because of repeated attacks on them.