Friday, 1 November 2013

Hamas: Power outage across Gaza as fuel runs out


GAZA CITY (AFP) -- A shortage of fuel halted the production of electricity across the Gaza Strip on Friday, said the energy authority of the Islamist movement Hamas.

"We have completely stopped the operation of (Gaza's sole) power plant this morning at 6 a.m. because we don't have a single liter of fuel," Fathi el-Sheikh Khalil, the authority's deputy chairman, told AFP.

An AFP correspondent in the Gaza Strip said the electricity supply had been cut off across most of the territory.

Khalil blamed the power outage on Egypt's destruction of tunnels used for bringing fuel to Gaza and accused the Palestinian Authority of charging Hamas too much for its fuel.

"Less than 50 percent of the needs of the Gaza Strip are currently covered by electricity from Israel (and) we can no longer get Egyptian fuel due to the destruction of tunnels from Egypt," he said.

"We tried to get fuel from Israel via the Palestinian Authority, but it has imposed prohibitive taxes."

The Gaza plant supplies about a third of the electricity the territory of 1.75 million people needs. more

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