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April 13, 2008

Hamas Continues to Manufacture a Crisis

Israeli and Palestinian Authority officials charged in Ha'aretz this weekend that Hamas continues to manufacture a fuel crisis:

The head of the Israel Defense Forces' Coordination and Liaison Administration at the Erez checkpoint on the Israel-Gaza border said over the weekend that Israel consistently streams fuel to the Gaza Strip while Palestinian actions have caused an initiated fuel crisis.

Colonel Nir Peres said that Gaza's closed fuel depots and excruciating lines at gas stations were the direct result a carefully planned and publicized Hamas campaign to create a fuel crisis, which stems from the group's refusal to transfer available fuel from the Israeli Nahal Oz fueling terminal into the Strip.

According to Peres, as of this weekend, the fuel containers on the Palestinian side of the fueling terminal contained some 190,000 liters of gasoline and over 800,000 liters of diesel fuel. . .

On Thursday, Israeli and Palestinian Authority officials said Hamas seizes half the fuel Israel sends to the Gaza Strip and uses it in part for its military wing's vehicles.

Hussein al-Sheikh, a PA official, confirmed to Haaretz that Hamas seizes half the amount of fuel transferred by Israel to the Strip. The amount confiscated is approximately 400,000 of the 800,000 liters of diesel transferred to Gaza weekly and intended for uses such as generators, hospitals, water pumps and sewage pumps. In contrast, Hamas uses this fuel for militant purposes.

Israeli sources said Hamas was preventing the pumping of all the fuel from the Nahal Oz depot's reserves and funneling it to the Strip's gas stations. In the past week, only a small amount of fuel and diesel was pumped from the depot, leaving some 820,000 liters of diesel and 200,000 of gas in the depots, they said.

See also Ynet or the Foreign Ministry.

Posted by TS at April 13, 2008 02:05 AM

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