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Gaza electricity crisis 'not solved'
Published Saturday 25/02/2012 (updated) 28/02/2012 11:09
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Gaza's sole power plant. (MaanImages/Wissam Nasser, File)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- The Gaza Strip has not received enough fuel to resume normal electricity levels, a Gaza energy official told Ma'an on Saturday.

Hamas spokesman Taher al-Nunu said on Thursday that the Gaza government had reached a deal with Egyptian authorities to end the electricity crisis that closed Gaza's sole power plant last week, plunging Gaza into up to 18 hour blackouts per day.

But Gaza energy authority director Ahmad Abu al-Amreen said there has been no change in the situation and the authority is still using the same limited pool of fuel. Egypt says it has delivered emergency fuel to Gaza amid the crisis, but the promised deal did not appear to solve the problem of regular supplies.

The deal as described by al-Nunu includes longer-term measures to increase the capacity of the power plant and link Gaza's electricity grid to Egyptian infrastructure. The shorter-term requirement is the delivery of fuel into Gaza, but a disagreement on the route of the fuel still appeared to be pending agreement.

Egypt wants to stop the use of underground tunnels for delivery of Egyptian fuel purchased by Palestinian authorities, and has severely reduced supply through the tunnel network, prompting the current crisis.

The Gaza government is pressing for the Rafah terminal between the countries to be equipped for fuel transfer, and is reluctant to accept fuel to be delivered via the Israeli-controlled Kerem Shalom crossing.

The government fears Israel will use control of supplies to squeeze the coastal strip. Israel severely restricts the movement of people and goods from the Gaza Strip since it tightened a blockade on the territory in 2007.

However, Rafah currently is only fitted for passengers, and its development is restricted by an agreement between Egypt, Israel and the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority.

"We are still waiting for the Egyptian agreement to let fuel enter Gaza officially and legally," Abu al-Amreen told Ma'an.

"If fuel was allowed in Gaza in the next few hours, it will help to operate the whole energy situation. This will not end the crisis but will bring it back to where it was before the lack of the fuel."
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1 ) Malone / Hfx
25/02/2012 20:45
Jeez...do you guys ever stop whining????

2 ) Judo / Canada
25/02/2012 21:11
The article is incomplete. Israel has for 7 years supplied an uninterpreted reliable supply of 120 megawatts of power to Gaza over numerous high voltage lines crossing into Gaza that directly connect to the Israeli power grid. This Israeli electricity has never been cut or reduced, not even during the war 3 years ago. This Israeli electricity is today and has always been 60% to 70% of Gaza's electric supply and is today how Gaza hospitals, water and sewer system and homes have any power at all.

3 ) southparkbear / usa
25/02/2012 23:38
judo a minor correction, there have been few times where electricity from israel was down due to the qassams hitting the greed near ashkelon

4 ) firas / palestine
26/02/2012 00:42
fk hmas .

5 ) Mohamed / Belgium
26/02/2012 03:39
The Pro Israel comments here are quite amazing?! I dare you guys do go and live 1 WEEK in gaza and then tell me how life is under Israeli occupation!!!!! You will be AMAZED!!!! Israel isn't this "guardian angel" of Gaza as some of you here think it is!

6 ) shirley / australia
26/02/2012 07:50
isreals pathetic action restricting goods leaving gaza reduced fuel for cooking and electricity is a n abhomination I have watched news from Gaza everyday for 6 yrs and Isreal has cut elrectricity hitting the power station in first place was a war crime and the jackboot state of Isreal is run by war criminals the snickering comments by south parkand malone Mirror Isreals miserable mind set and most jews jews are the eternal victoms

7 ) Hey :Rr / Wait A Minute
26/02/2012 10:44
It's about time to start launching attacks inside & at Egypt now if they are gonna take part in contributing to the oppressing of the Gazans- if they want to allow harm or unfair suffering to the peoole of Gaza then they will get a fair dose of their own medicine. Just wait- Mark my words too if you want. We'll find out the correct culprits to target too. :/ N/K

8 ) Angy / holland/egypt
01/03/2012 00:23
Israelies are freaking terrorists. they are good in hiding their hideous crimes, bec the major news channels are owned and controlled by the zionists. i see on daily bases pictures, videos and reports about their nasty crimes!!
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