Israel to allow construction materials into Gaza

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JERUSALEM (AP) -- The Israeli military says it is allowing rare shipments of construction materials into Gaza to allow the reconstruction of 10 privately owned factories.

Until now only international projects have been allowed to import such materials, which Israel restricts because of concerns they could be used by the militants who regularly launch rockets at Israeli towns.

Hamas-ruled Gaza is subject to an Israeli and Egyptian blockade that includes restrictions on the movement of goods and people.

In Gaza, Palestinian government coordinator Raed Fattouh said the first two trucks with materials entered Wednesday. The military says several dozen trucks will be allowed in.

The factories being rebuilt were destroyed in fighting in 2009, when Israel invaded to try to stop near-daily rocket salvos.