World Bulletin / News Desk
Construction is yet to resume in the Turkish-Palestinian Friendship hospital in Gaza as workers wait for Israel to permit the entry of construction supplies, which have been pending at an Israeli port for over six months, into the Palestinian enclave, according to one of the hospital project officials.
"The idea behind the hospital was to build a Turkish project in the Gaza Strip to provide medical services to the public and train medical students who study in Gaza's Islamic University," Gamal al-Khodari, head of university's board of trustees who presides over the project, told Anadolu Agency.
He went on say that the $34 million hospital would be ready for inauguration by the end of 2014 if Israel committed to its announcement last week that it would allow the pending supplies into the besieged enclave.
Construction began two years ago in the project – designed and funded by Turkey – which will spread over 100,000 square meters of land.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had agreed to sponsor the project which was suggested to him by al-Khodari during the latter's visit to Turkey in 2010.
The construction process was supposed to conclude six months ago but it was brought to a halt when Israel declined to allow a shipment of supplies from Turkey through the Karam Abu Salem border commercial crossing as part of tightened restrictions on transfer of supplies into the blockaded enclave.
However, a Palestinian border official had confirmed to Anadolu Agency earlier the reports by Israeli media that Israel has signed off the shipment, though the supplies have yet to enter the Strip.
Israel's approval of the shipment came amid increasing reports of looming rapprochement between Turkey and Israel after years of tension which followed the killing of several Turkish activists by Israeli forces during a raid on a Gaza aid flotilla in March 2010.Last Mod: 30 Mart 2014, 19:20