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Source: Egypt restricting fuel deliveries to Gaza

July 16, 2012 6:02 P.M. (Updated: July 17, 2012 8:17 P.M.)
EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) -- Egyptian authorities have restricted the amount of Qatari fuel entering the Gaza Strip through an Egyptian crossing with Israel, an Egyptian source said Monday.

While the Al-Ouja crossing in Egypt's northern Sinai has the capacity for ten trucks of fuel per day, Egypt only permits six trucks to cross, the official said, noting that this amount cannot meet Gaza's energy needs.

The Egyptian source said an estimated four million liters of Qatari fuel have arrived in the Gaza Strip in recent weeks.

Gaza had been plagued by a fuel crisis since mid-February, when Egypt cut off supplies via a tunnel network under the border between the countries.

In May, a ship loaded with about 30 million-liters of fuel as a donation from Qatar, docked at Suez port but its transfer to Gaza was held up as the sides argued over the route of its delivery to Gaza. Hamas wanted the fuel to come through its Rafah crossing with Egypt, bypassing Israel.

The sole power plant in Gaza shut down again in June after it ran out of fuel while the Qatari shipment was delayed.

Shortly after, Gaza received its first supplies form the donated fuel via Israel's Al-Ouja crossing.
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