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PA, Egypt sign gas deal to end Gaza crisis
Published Tuesday 27/03/2012 (updated) 01/04/2012 09:54
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CAIRO (Ma'an) -- The Palestine Electricity Company on Tuesday announced a deal with Egypt to provide gas to the Gaza Strip.

Palestine Electricity Company director in Gaza Walid Saad Sayil signed the agreement with the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation in Cairo on behalf of the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority.

Sayil told reporters that Egyptian technicians have been instructed to conduct geographical surveys to find the best route for a network of pipelines to transport gas from Sheikh Zweid to the Rafah crossing on Gaza's border.

Meanwhile, technicians in Gaza will prepare to install a 30-kilometer pipeline from Rafah to the power plant in Gaza City, he said.

Sayil send the new agreement will increase the plant's capacity from 40 to 180 Megawatts. The power station currently runs on diesel but generators will be converted to use gas, he added.

The sole power plant in Gaza has shut down four times since February due to chronic fuel shortages, causing rolling power outages of up to 18 hours a day.

Ambulances and firetrucks have been taken out of service and bakeries were forced to reduce their hours as petrol pumps ran dry across Gaza.

The latest crisis began after Egypt cracked down on tunnels smuggling fuel into Gaza. Egypt, which is also experiencing fuel shortages, urged Hamas to import fuel across its border with Israel.

Hamas refused, citing concerns that Israel would then have the power to block supplies. Meanwhile, Cairo was reluctant to transfer fuel through the Rafah crossing over fears it would exempt Israel from its responsibilities as an occupying power.
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1 ) Of All The / FOOLISHNESS
27/03/2012 18:04
How can the "PA & Egypt sign gas deal to end Gaza crisis", when neither of them even govern the Gaza Strip, and Hamas may NOT accept the gas deal, any more than Hamas accepts either Egypt's peace with Israel, or the PLO's Oslo Accords with Israel. - Of All The FOOLISHNESS.

2 ) Gas / Egypt
27/03/2012 18:52
Palestinians should contact Sinai Bedouins - they know how to handle natural gas and might help.

3 ) Colin Wright / USA
27/03/2012 18:52
'Meanwhile, Cairo was reluctant to transfer fuel through the Rafah crossing over fears it would exempt Israel from its responsibilities as an occupying power.' Israel already considers itself exempt from its responsibilities as an occupying power. In fact, I'm having a hard time thinking of any responsibility they DO accept. Basically, the idea is that others should care for and feed the Palestinian population while they expropriate it and kill it at will -- or did I miss something?

4 ) Power / Crisis
27/03/2012 18:55
Palestians are used to the habit of having everything for free; they are not accustomed to pay their bills. But no one wants to give them anything for free any more, even EU. Egypt is not in the position to supply free fuel or gas to Gaza right now – Egyptians are starving and desperately looking to bring some money into country. I am not sure that poor Egyptian people can be happy about free fuel supply to Gaza. It is time to pay bills pals.

5 ) Arnold / Canada
27/03/2012 21:47
Colin Wright / USA.# 3. The correct statement by Egypt should be " Egypt was reluctant to transfer fuel to Gaza over fears it ( Egypt ) would need to RETAKE responsibiity for Gaza. If you would read history you would know that post WW1 the British and French carved out the ME and Egypt won the lottery. The prize. Gaza.

6 ) Mel / USA
28/03/2012 01:23
Gaza is Palestinian territory. So is the water along that coast line,INCLUDING THE MARINE GAS FIELD,LAYING OFF THE GAZAN SHORE,before you get to international waters! Don't forget,Egypt and Palestine,to complete your own geological survey(like BP did before)and realize/utilize,for your own Arab benefit,what natural gas lays within.BEFORE Israel PIRATES/PILLAGES the lot,through slant drilling?Zionists already have stolen enough Arab natural resources.It has to STOP!

7 ) @ Colin #3 / Responsiblity & Consequences
28/03/2012 01:52
Oh Yes, You definitely "missed something": 1- Palestinians need to start taking responsibility for themselves, and stop begging for donations, and expecting to live off UNRWA forever, and 2- Palestinians need to start accepting the consequences of their own actions, and stop blaming everyone but themselves, for their situation !!

8 ) Sherri Munnerlyn / US
28/03/2012 04:58
Well, I think this agreement is good news. But I wonder how long it wil be before Israel blows up the pipeline, they have destroyed so much infrastructure in Gaza. I am sure Israel is not happy about this agreement. I was just reading a few days ago about Israel destroying solar power facilities Palestinians had built in the Occupied West Bank.

9 ) Mel / Gaza
28/03/2012 07:03
@Power. We are paying our bills! We have paid a HEAVY PRICE since the creation of Israel and are still paying! Give us what belongs to us (including the gas fields on our coast) and we won't need Egypt, the EU or the UN!

10 ) Mark of Lewiston / USA
28/03/2012 09:38
Better get that pipeline 100 meters underground and shielded by reinforced concrete in multiple layers. Then make a deal to drill diagonally from onshore to the Gaza gas fields. And keep that underground, too. For #4 - the story says it is a contract. That means the gas will be paid for.

11 ) southparkbear / usa
28/03/2012 14:20
cheers till the next gas crisis which will come soon

12 ) EE / UK
28/03/2012 16:23
For Mark #10 - the story says it is an agreement, not a contract. Story does not say who would pay for the gas and would it be paid for at all.


13 ) southparkbear / usa
31/03/2012 12:31
i agree with mark. israel need to practice bombing before they hit iran

14 ) Mary / Ireland
31/03/2012 14:41
#4 Palestinians are paying daily with their lives. What more do you want from them? Where are YOU from by the way............?
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