Daily Israel Report

Powerless Gaza Blames Israel - Again

Lone power plant shuts down only 12 days after being restarted. Israel blamed, although Egypt's siege has cut off fuel smuggling.
By Ari Yashar
First Publish: 12/27/2013, 11:34 AM

Gaza during power outage
Gaza during power outage
Flash 90

Gaza's only power plant ground to a halt again on Friday, only 12 days after being brought back online following a 7 week shutdown due to fuel shortages. The shutdown was announced by Gaza's electricity firm, reports AFP.

An official of the company claimed "the plant stopped working on Friday morning due to a lack of fuel caused by Israel's closure of the Kerem Shalom crossing." He added that electricity would now be supplied for only 6 hours a day instead of the normal 12.

While officials from the territory's Islamist rulers were quick to blame Israel, in reality Egypt is largely involved after having shut down the tunnels into the Sinai that were used to illegally smuggle fuel. Gaza's power plant was initially shut down on November 1 under the Egyptian siege.

Egypt has accused the Hamas terrorist organization which rules Gaza of promoting terror in Egypt through the Muslim Brotherhood, which it is an offshoot of. Hamas denies the charges, although Egypt is continuing to act against the terror group.

As for the Kerem Shalom crossing, it reportedly was closed Tuesday after Gaza terrorists fatally shot an IDF civilian worker. The crossing had been used to deliver fuel purchased from Israel by the Palestinian Authority, using money donated by Qatar.

On Thursday, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said of the incident "we thought there were 'game rules,' according to which you do not fire at civilians who work near the fence. Until now, they did not fire at civilians, and we will have to think what to do, if someone has changed the rules."

Tensions have risen after terrorists from Gaza fired 2 Kassam rockets at Israel in as many days. In response, the IAF has struck several terror targets in Gaza.

Just in late November, Hamas threatened Israel with genocide. The terror group also appears to be gathering long-range missiles for further assaults on Israel.

Meanwhile, recent reports indicate that Turkey has replaced Iran as the leading financial sponsor of Hamas since 2012, following a cooling of relations between the Sunni terrorist group and its former Shia Iranian sponsors.