Gazans at risk of losing power

► Why is the power plant running out of fuel?

While its land is rich in gas and oil, the only power station in the Gaza Strip has run out of fuel to operate. Gaza Energy Authority warned Sunday August 16 that the power plant will no longer be able to operate “At full capacity” on the following Tuesday morning, plunging the enclave and its two million inhabitants into a “Deficit” electric “More than 75%”. The week before, Gazans had had about six hours of continuous supply, followed by ten hours of blackouts.

This threat of electricity shortage takes place in the midst of the strengthening of the Israeli blockade against the Gaza Strip. Israel closed the Kerem Shalom crossing point, the only one for goods, on August 11, then blocked the area in which Palestinians are allowed to fish the following Sunday.

The power station depends on the Hebrew state for its supply since it “Works on fuel”, says Pierre Blanc, professor of political science at Sciences-Po Bordeaux and specialist in Palestine, “An energy controlled by Israel”. The researcher notes that the Gazan power station supplies everything, including hospitals. According to him, the economy of the Palestinian Authority, ” tattered “, cannot meet the immediate needs of the plant.

► Why is Israel stepping up the blockade against the Gaza Strip?

Despite a truce established in 2019, tensions are latent between Israel and Hamas. For a week, they have intensified. Hamas is stepping up its rocket fire and sending incendiary balloons. Israeli firefighters estimate that nearly 150 fires have been caused by these balloons since August 6 in southern Israel.

Israel responded by strengthening the blockade on land, sea and air, but also by directly attacking the Palestinian enclave. IDF says it targeted in airstrikes “An arms storage warehouse” of Hamas, as well as a “Underground infrastructure of the terrorist group”. Israeli tanks bombed “Military observation posts” of the Islamist movement.

An Egyptian delegation arrived on Monday afternoon in Gaza on August 17 to try to appease this latest escalation of violence.

► What is the influence of the announced agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates?

Unveiled on August 13, the agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates did not help reduce clashes between the Jewish state and the Gaza Strip.

The Palestinians were shocked and taken aback by this formalization of the links between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi, analyzes David Rigoulet-Roze, researcher associated with Iris: “Hamas immediately denounced a blank check for the continuation of the occupation and the Palestinian Authority spoke of a betrayal of the Palestinian cause. Palestinians in general feel like they are being sacrificed on the altar of regional interests that go beyond them. “

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