The British supermarket giant Tesco is opening one of its popular Metro stores on the breached border point between the Gaza Strip and Egypt.
The mini-supermarkets have proved popular in British urban areas, where commuters have been able to get themselves basic foodstuffs on the way home from work. Now busy Gazan Palestinians will be able to pop out for a pint of milk and a ready meal for one, before returning to their bombed-out besieged enclave that remains without power or reliable running water. ‘Our ready-washed Caesar salads are a great favourite,’ said store manager Gill Summerby, ‘and we are pushing the Weight Watchers range for those refugees who need to lose a few pounds!’
Thousands of Palestinians have already poured into the Sinai peninsular to get ready-washed Caesar salads, the Gravadlax medley and Tesco’s popular range of organic quiches. ‘It took a while to get the special offers right,’ said Summerby. ‘Not knowing much about the complex religious ethnic divisions in this corner of the Middle East, we just put up a big signs saying ‘Guaranteed Kosher’. It turns out that the Gaza strip is not full of Israelis despite what it seemed to show on the old atlas in our office. But I’m sure our ‘Every Little Helps’ message will strike a chord in the disputed territories.’
An Israeli military deputation has already been to the store to make sure the Gaza Tesco Metro was not selling Kalashnikovs or Mortar Launchers, and left with a pint of milk, a small sliced loaf and a ‘Aromatic Crispy Duck for two’.
Unlike with most Tesco developments, existing local businesses have not complained yet that they’ll be put out of business, as they haven’t got anything to sell anyway. However, Ms Summerby still detected a great deal of anger among her customers from the war torn Palestinian enclave. ‘I understand their anger, but we can’t supply only free range chicken at this stage. They are just going to have to be patient.’