State of Palestine: Gaza farmers feed flowers to sheep as lockdown leads to lack of demand

Farmers in the Gaza Strip have been forced to throw their flowers away due to the low demand, as filmed on Saturday. More than 25,000 farmers on the occupied Palestinian territories reported significant losses due to the coronavirus lockdown. «Because of coronavirus, there is no local marketing and we have huge losses because the cost of a 'dunum' (1,000 square meters) is 30 thousand shekels (€7,680),» said Labbad Hijazi, the owner of a flower farm in Rafah. “Roses are destroyed in the process of collecting, and then the roses are taken out of the farm to the waste and waiting for them are the owners of sheep and they take for their sheep, but most roses are sent to the waste,” he added. Hijazi keeps small quantities of his flowers, which took him about a year to grow, hoping to sell them for a low price to local stores. Last week, the UN warned that «the survival and continuity of the Palestinian Authority» was in danger due to the COVID-19 crisis and called on the international community to «provide generous support and technical assistance to confront the massive damage that has befallen the Palestinian economy.” The Gaza Strip has been in lockdown since March 5 and together with the occupied West Bank has reported 418 confirmed coronavirus cases and 2 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

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