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Marking two years since the brutal Israeli assault that killed more than 2,200 Palestinians, #GazaLives tells the stories of Palestinians from Gaza, in their own words.

al-Aqsa University
Photo: al-Aqsa University

My name is Abd Albawwab. I’m a senior student at al-Aqsa University of Gaza.

Like thousands of undergraduates, I’m worried about unemployment after graduation.

Because of the brutal blockade, I can’t travel to work abroad, or continue further studies outside of Gaza.

The UN report emphasises that unless urgent action is taken to improve water, supply, power, health, Gaza will no longer be liveable by 2020.

The action we and every human should take is to boycott Israel until it abides by international law.

Destroyed buildings in Gaza
Photo: Destroyed buildings in Gaza, July 2014 (Mohammed Al Baba/Oxfam)

My name is Eman Almassri. I’m from Gaza, where there is no electricity, no jobs, no gas, and no life.

I graduated from al-Aqsa University and tried to travel in order to complete my studies in English Literature but it is not allowed because the Israeli siege and the closed Rafah crossing.

I cannot see my brothers, who have lived in Egypt since 2003. Also I cannot visit my relatives who live abroad.

In the last war on Gaza we suffered a lot and we left our house. Do you know how you’d feel if you found yourself without anywhere to live?

We never felt safe in our homeland.

The wars on Gaza didn’t just kill us, but our dreams too.

The barbaric Israeli siege prevents us from living as all people around the world do.

Because of this, we boycott Israel and we ask every single person who seeks freedom, justice and equality to boycott Israel.

Scenes from Gaza Crisis 2014
Photo: Scenes from Gaza Crisis 2014 (UN Photo/Shareef Sarhan)

My name Mohamed Eldous, and I’m from the Gaza Strip, Palestine.

I’m a member of BDS Movement and I’m studying at al-Aqsa University in Gaza.

It’s been two years since the last Israeli war against Gaza. The war was instigated by the Israeli occupation as always.

Israeli strikes targeted civilian houses, institutions, gardens, and even UN schools.

The seven weeks of war badly affected the psychological and emotional well-being of the people in Gaza.

At the moment the war started, Israeli forces started killing and shooting civilians, including women and children, without any mercy.

My own experience in that war was awful. Israeli forces fired on our house, and our neighbours’ houses.

I lost my cousin, and some of my friends and relatives during the savage assault. After twenty two days of the war, Israeli forces shelled our supermarket – the source of our family’s revenue.

Because of the loss of income, and because still now there is no support for us to rebuild our supermarket, I started looking for work, alongside my university studies.

So it is a hard life for us in Gaza. And now at the end of my university studies, I would have liked to complete my master’s degree outside of Gaza, but I can’t, because of the Israeli siege imposed on Gaza strip for more than 10 years.

I call on everyone to boycott Israel and support us.

UN School in Gaza Attacked
Photo: UN School in Gaza Attacked, July 2014 (UN Photo/Shareef Sarhan)

My name is Nada Faisal. I’m a student at al-Aqsa University in Gaza.

Currently, I live in Gaza, not just because I love it, but also because I’m imprisoned here.

I need to travel in order to continue my studies, but I’ve never been allowed. I need to travel and see the world around Gaza, how it looks, but I’ve never been allowed.

Our basic rights are trampled by Israel, that’s why we boycott and call upon every single person around the world to boycott and work for isolating Israel.

If you believe in equality, justice and freedom, boycott the Israeli oppressor.

Photo: Gaza, September 2014 (Luis Astudillo C. / Andes)

My name is Naema, a graduate from al-Aqsa University in Gaza.

This message is to familiarise you with one of the hidden crimes committed by the Israeli occupation against the Palestinians.

My mother had cancer. The hospitals and physicians in Gaza were unable to help her.

She had to leave Gaza for treatment, but Israel’s cruel siege didn’t allow her. She fought her disease for five years.

Then she passed away.

This is one of their crimes. If you don’t want more Palestinian patients to die this way, boycott the criminal, Israel.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors.

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