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Egyptian electricity lines feeding southern Gaza Strip damaged

Dec. 21, 2016 9:32 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 21, 2016 9:32 P.M.)
GAZA (Ma'an) -- Gaza’s power company said in a statement on Wednesday that Egyptian power lines feeding the besieged Gaza Strip were damaged due to complications at the power plant in Arish city in the North Sinai. 

The damage in the Egyptian lines caused confusion in the electricity distribution to the coastal enclave, and has cut the electricity for more than 16 hours a day in the southern part of Gaza, according to the statement. 

Egypt supplies more than 20 megawatts of electricity to the Gaza Strip through three power lines.

Even at full capacity, Egyptian and Israeli electricity grids, together with Gaza's sole power plant, fail to cover the Gaza Strip’s energy needs and only provide energy to Gaza’s inhabitants for eight hours each day.

The Israeli blockade has also impeded the capacity to repair Gaza’s damaged infrastructure in the wake of a devastating Israeli offensive in 2014.

The power plant has not run at full capacity in years, as the enclave has experienced severe electricity shortages over the years, exacerbating already dire living conditions in the small Palestinian territory, leading the UN in 2015 to warn that Gaza could be “uninhabitable” by 2020.

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