(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) The last shipment of Qatar-donated diesel -- used to fuel the Gaza Strip's sole power plant -- is expected to run out within four or five days, a Palestinian official said Sunday.
The announcement comes after only around two months of steady electricity in the besieged coastal enclave, which suffers from a severe lack of fuel due to a seven-year-long economic blockade enforced jointly by Israel and Egyp
Fathi al-Sheikh Khalil, deputy chairperson of the Gaza power authority, said that the Qatari donation had helped operate two generators and made electricity available on the basis of eight hours on, eight hours off. As the last of the fuel runs out, power availability will be reduced to six hours on, twelve hours off, as before the fuel was donated, Khalil sai
"We asked the Ramallah government to provide Gaza's power plant with tax-free fuel because the money we collect in electricity bills isn't enough to buy fuel to run two generators," he said, according to Maan news agenc
Khalil added that the chairman of the power authority in Ramallah, Omar Kittana, "has been trying to convince the minister of finance to sell Gaza tax-free fuel for a year or half a year." Qatar donated 10 million to Hamas authorities in Gaza for fuel in the wake of the humanitarian crisis caused by severe weather in the region in Decembe
But even before winter storm Alexa, Gaza had experienced extreme fuel shortages that cut off access to basic necessities for Gaza residents since early Novembe
The Gaza Strip has been under a severe economic blockade imposed by Israel since 200