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Hamas Rejects Egypt Plan to Bring Gaza Fuel Via Israeli Crossing

Feb. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Hamas authorities rejected an Egyptian proposal to bring in fuel via an Israeli crossing point to reactivate Gaza’s only power plant, which shut down four days ago when diesel supplies were disrupted.

“This is unacceptable because of our bitter experience with the Zionist occupation and the way it controls the delivery of the shipments,” Ahmed Abu Al-Amreen of the Hamas-run Energy Authority, told reporters.

Diesel for the plant came from Israel until last year when Hamas started to buy cheaper fuel from Egypt, bringing it via a network of underground tunnels. Egypt is bound by agreements with Israel and cannot ship diesel to Gaza directly through the Rafah crossing point, which is limited to the movement of individuals.

Hamas warned this week that hospitals are running out of fuel for generators and food shortages are likely as manufacturers may be forced to halt production. Abu Al-Amreen said that Hamas proposed bringing the Egyptian fuel via Rafah or direct underground pipelines.

To contact the reporter on this story: Saud Abu Ramadan in Jerusalem at sramadan@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Gwen Ackerman at gackerman@bloomberg.net

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