Hundreds of businessmen in the Gaza Strip have been complaining that the Israeli civil administration has increased the rate at which the transit permits allowing them access to Israel are being revoked, resulting in the collapse of their businesses. Maher Tabbaa, director of public relations and media at the Gaza Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told Al-Monitor that the policy could lead to Gaza's total, systemic economic collapse.
“Ever since last year, and especially since [Avigdor] Liberman entered the Defense Ministry [in May], 1,700 permits to enter Israel have been revoked,” Tabbaa claimed. “It started very slowly, but we noticed the trend over a year ago. When a merchant showed up at the Erez border crossing with a valid permit, the authorities confiscated the permit without warning and ordered him to return to Gaza. Over the last few weeks, this has turned into a flood of confiscations. Every merchant thinks that he is next and that they will revoke his permit and destroy his business, just like they did to other merchants.”