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Egypt forces seize fuel truck headed to Gaza tunnels

May 6, 2012 8:09 P.M. (Updated: May 7, 2012 7:39 P.M.)
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma'an) -- Egyptian authorities on Sunday seized a fuel truck headed to tunnels under the border with Gaza Strip, security officials said.

Security forces confiscated 10 thousand liters of fuel carried by the truck in the northern Sinai, the official told Ma'an.

Egypt moved in February to shut down fuel deliveries to Gaza via the tunnel network -- used to bring goods into the blockaded coastal strip -- sparking a fuel shortage that caused widespread blackouts.

Israel tightened a land and sea blockade on Gaza in 2007 after Hamas took control of the coastal strip, restricting the movement of goods and the 1.7 million residents out of the 360 square kilometer territory.

The formal Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt is only fitted for passengers, but Gaza officials are pressing for the terminal to bring fuel supplies into the strip.

Officials have already agreed to stave off the electricity blackouts by upgrading the sole power plant, a project due for completion this month.

Egypt and Palestinian authorities also agreed to link the Gazan electricity grid to Egypt's, as well as converting the coastal enclave's sole power plant from diesel to gas.
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