Hamas Rejects Egypt Fuel Offer as Gaza Energy Crisis Deepens

Crisis emerges in wake of Egypt's decision to stop the smuggling of gas to Gaza through underground tunnels due to weakening economy and its own gas crisis.

Hamas leaders rejected an offer by Egypt to deliver gas to the Gaza Strip power station on Saturday, four days into a major energy crisis that has taken a hold of the coastal territory.

According to Ahmad Abu al-Amrin, a representative from the Gaza energy authority, the proposal was rejected due to Hamas’ previous experience with the “Zionist occupation” and the way in which Israel controls the flow of goods into Gaza.

Earlier on Sunday, the Palestinian Authority rejected an Israeli proposal to buy fuel directly from Israel and transport it to Gaza, as it had done so over a year ago.

The crisis emerged over the past week after Egypt stopped the smuggling of gas through underground tunnels to Gaza. Over the past year, Gaza has received its fuel to produce energy through the tunnels at an extremely low price – nearly NIS 2.5 per liter.

Egypt’s decision, which was made due to of an economic crisis and an overall lack of fuel in the country, forced the Gaza power plant to stop working. The plant provides nearly 60% of the strips energy.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health claims that the fuel reserves intended for hospitals is due to disappear on Sunday.

Read this article in Hebrew