On Sunday, due to lack of fuel supplies from Israel, the Gaza power plant stopped operations. Sunday night, Israeli security officials admitted that the impacts of Israel's complete cut-off of the Gaza Strip were worse than they expected when they put the plan in place. The 1.5 million Palestinians in the Gaza Strip are once again in a total blackout, an event that has become commonplace since Israel's bombing of the Gaza power plant in 2006. Sunday night's blackout was a result of the complete cut-off of fuel that was implemented on Sunday by Israeli forces controlling the border.
The fuel supply to Gaza was extremely low already, causing over seventy deaths of hospital patients since last June, when the democratically-elected Hamas party took power in the Gaza Strip and Israel declared the territory to be an enemy-run area.
Israeli forces control all borders of the Gaza Strip, and have cut off access to and from the Gaza Strip, cut off all imports and exports, and have now cut off even the tiny trickle of fuel that they had been allowing in to Gaza. That trickle had enabled emergency hospital care and electricity in 2-4 hour shifts per day for parts of the Gaza Strip.
Already, Palestinian patients have been dying at alarming rates since last June. But now, the numbers are likely to increase. Since the fuel cut-off on Sunday, an eighteen year old cancer patient has died in a Gaza hospital.
The ruling Hamas government claims that five patients died on Sunday due to the fuel cut-off.
Israel supplies 75% of the fuel to Gaza, with Palestinians paying a high price for the import of fuel from the Israeli occupying forces. Israeli officials claim that the Hamas government is attempting to use the fuel cut-off in a campaign of propaganda against Israel. But the fact remains that Israel has indeed cut off the fuel to Gaza, and the borders remain completely sealed under Israeli control.