Friday, 6 March 2015

Israeli forces open fire at Palestinians in southern Gaza Strip

Israeli forces deployed on the border east of Khan Younis opened fire at Palestinians on Friday. Witnesses report the shots were fired on Palestinians in their agricultural lands in eastern al-Qarrara, north of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip.

An Israeli army spokeswoman told Ma'an that soldiers fired warning shots as Palestinians approached the fence, after which the individuals turned back.

No injuries were reported.

Palestinians whose agricultural lands lie close to the buffer zone between Gaza and Israel have reported open fire from Israeli forces as a routine occurrence. more

Gaza's sole power plant shuts down due to lack of fuel

The Gaza Strip's sole power plant was shut down on Wednesday evening as Qatari-donated fuel supplies finally ran out, a Gaza power authority said.

"The power plant stopped producing electricity during the night, after funds from Qatari donations to cover fuel costs ran out," the Gaza authority said.

"We are unable to pay for the fuel because of the taxes on purchasing it."

Hamas pays the PA for fuel imported to besieged Gaza, but is short of cash and had been unable to cover the additional costs in tax.

In December, Qatar stepped in and donated $10 million to the PA to cover the tax, effectively exempting Hamas from paying it.

But that money has dried up, and the PA is insisting Hamas begin paying the tax again, the group says.

The plant requires 550,000 liters of fuel per day to produce at capacity, the energy authority says. more