Hundreds of Gaza residents protest electricity cuts

Gaza resident protest electricity cuts, blame Hamas, Palestinian Authority.

AFP, Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Gaza protest
Gaza protest
Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash 90

Hundreds of Arabs protested in Gaza on Thursday against electricity cuts and worsening economic conditions in the coastal enclave, an AFP journalist reported.

The demonstrators rallying in the Jabaliya refugee camp vented their anger against both the Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and the Islamist terror movement Hamas, which runs Gaza.

"Our demands are fair. We want them to provide us with the minimum for a decent life," Mohamed Nofal, one of the protesters, told AFP. "Life is really difficult in Gaza nowadays. No food, no water, no security, no border crossings, no education and no health."

Gaza's two million residents have been subjected to a decade-long Hamas rule, which imposes tight controls on civilians' rights and their access to electricity, medical aid, and communications.

The electricity cuts are a result of a dispute between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. Israel has stepped in, increasing the power supply to Gaza despite recent rocket attacks and the risk of creating an electricity shortage in Israel.

The PA announced on Wednesday that it had agreed to restore payments for electricity in Gaza, six months after halting them.

The electricity payments have been a key issue in ongoing efforts at reconciliation between Hamas and Abbas' Fatah, but they have yet to take effect. A large part of the reason is that the PA wants Hamas to surrender its weapons, but Hamas refuses to do so.

On Friday, Hamas leaders announced they would acquiesce on condition that the Palestine Liberation Organization joined them, London's Al-Hiyat newspaper reported.