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Israeli company threatens to cut West Bank electricity
Published Monday 13/08/2012 (updated) 14/08/2012 14:24
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JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- An Israeli electricity company has threatened to cut off supplies to the West Bank over unpaid debts, a Palestinian electricity company official said Monday.

The Jerusalem Electricity Company received an official warning from the Israeli Electric Corporation that it would cut off electricity due to unpaid debts amounting to 424 million shekels ($105 million), Hasan Muslih, a member of the JEC's board of directors, told Ma'an.

A major reason for the accumulation of debt is that refugee camps in the West Bank refuse to pay their bills, Muslih said. There is also a disparity in the buying and selling tariff of electricity, he added.

The threatened cut to supplies would affect areas in Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Ramallah and Jericho, Muslih said, adding that power cuts in the West Bank could become as frequent as in the Gaza Strip.

The Jerusalem Electricity Company has organized a campaign to collect unpaid bills.

Gaza has been plagued with intermittent blackouts since February when Egypt stopped allowing Hamas authorities to receive fuel via a tunnel network under Gaza's southern border.
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1 ) Ramallah is an isolated island / Palestine
13/08/2012 16:44
Last night, there were mysterious blackouts in Jerusalem, moving from area to area, starting in Beit Hanina at Iftar. Like many here, I have to pre-pay my electricity, so it would be quite unjust to punish us for somebody else's unpaid bills! [Prepaid runs out whenever, without warning, in the middle of the night, in freezing cold storms] UNRWA is responsible for paying for electricity for refugee camps, as I understand, and UNRWA probably pays their bills. Israel has VAT to withhold!

2 ) Power / Crisis
13/08/2012 19:39
It is time to pay your bills, pals.

3 ) Robby / USA
14/08/2012 05:02
1 ) Ramallah is an isolated island / Palestine "UNRWA is responsible for paying for electricity ..." you mean with my tax dollars?

4 ) Bemused / New Zealand
14/08/2012 16:33
@ Robby - but you don't mind your tax dollars propping up illegal Israeli settlements, or being used for the development and use of prohibited weapons, the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity, and the destruction of world heritage sites such as Al-Aqsa? Come come, a bit inconsistent with any form of morality, don't you think?

5 ) USAUSA / USA
19/08/2012 20:21
@4: we can spend our tax dollars as we like. We don't tell New Zealand how to spend its money. We support Israel - we don't like "Palestine" ok? If New Zealand wants to break relations with us over that, go right ahead. We don't have to justify anything to New Zealand.
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