Top UN official proposes expanding UN-Israel system of getting construction materials to Gaza

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The top U.N. official for the Mideast says Gaza will require massive reconstruction and is proposing expanding a U.N.-Israeli system to import construction materials into the Palestinian territory.

Robert Serry told the U.N. Security Council on Monday that Gaza suffered unprecedented destruction during fighting between Israel and Hamas. He said there are indications that "the volume of reconstruction will be about three times" what it was after the 2009 Hamas-Israel conflict.

He said approximately 16,800 housing units have been destroyed or severely damaged, affecting some 100,000 Palestinians.

Serry said ways must be found to get large quantities of building materials, including cement, into Gaza "in a way that fulfills Israel's security concerns."