No cooking gas for Gaza

Saleh Naami , Monday 11 Apr 2011

Egyptian gas sold to Israel is not finding its way to Gaza, as the Israeli authorities impose tight restrictions on import of essential commodities

Mahmoud Al-Shawa, director of the Gaza Gas Station Owners Union, declared that the Gaza strip completely lacks cooking gas due to the shutting down by occupying authorities of the only commercial crossing that provides Gaza with essential goods and commodities.  

In a statement to the press, Al-Shawa made clear that closing the crossing has dramatically affected the entry of gas cylinders to Gaza, especially as filling station stores are depleted.

Al-Shawa explained that even when the crossing was open, Israel only allowed the passage of enough gas to realize 50 per cent of local needs, saying that Gaza needs 300 tons per day for a period of two weeks to solve the crisis.

He added that the union had been sending requests to the Egyptian government, its foreign minister and the High Council of Armed Forces to step in and help find a quick resolution to the crisis Gaza is suffering, and to sell gas to the area.

Al-Shawa mentioned that the gas that Israel sells to Gaza at astonishing prices is the same gas Israel imports cheaply from Egypt. The price of one gas cylinder sold to Gazans is 65 Shekels (20 US dollars), added Al-Shawa.

The Ministry of National Economy in Gaza also reported on Monday a shortage of primary commodities in the first quarter of 2011 as a result of the Israeli authorities prohibiting the entry of most economic commodities and materials.

The Ministry cited in its report that 14,760 tons of flour entered Gaza in 2011, while the actual needed amount of flour was 45,000 tons.

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