Recent events in Gaza have had a profound impact not only on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but on the whole Middle East region and beyond. Following the Palestinian presidential elections in January 2005, Israel's unilateral "disengagement" from Gaza in September 2005, the Palestinian legislative elections in January 2006 and the formation of a national unity government following the Mecca Agreement in March 2007, many had hoped for a new window of opportunity for improving the situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories which could potentially pave the way for the resumption of peace talks to bring about an end to the protracted conflict. However, the Palestinian situation has dramatically deteriorated since June 2006, turning Gaza's already critical political, economic and security conditions into unprecedented levels of blockade, poverty, violence and uncertainty.
This report examines the immediate and desperate situation in Gaza through a "human security" lens. Much is known about the parameters of the political endgame of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but little is being done to examine and minimise the current unbearable human suffering in Gaza. This study seeks to redress this balance by offering a new insight and a detailed account of the day to day security breaches and the root causes of violence. Uniquely, it offers ways to improve the security situation based on both the particularities of the area and international law and conventions that govern such situations.