Days of Palestine reports that the reduction of power to the Gaza Strip has caused a “total collapse” in all the service sectors across the tiny coastal enclave, which has been under strict Israeli siege for 11 years.
The Gaza Strip is home to some two million people, more than three-quarters of whom the United Nations says depend on humanitarian aid.
Power reductions come despite stark warnings of the humanitarian implications for Gazan civilians, who already suffer from critical shortages of power, with most homes receiving only a few hours even before the cut.
Israeli human rights group Gisha said in a statement, on Monday, that, by reducing supplies â€śIsrael is knowingly aggravating an already dangerous situation in which the strip is teetering on the verge of a humanitarian crisis.â€ť
The vast majority of residents are Muslim and are currently observing the month-long holy fasting rite of Ramadan.
Robert Piper, UN humanitarian coordinator for the Palestinian territories, last week, warned that Palestinians were being â€śheld hostage to this longstanding Israeli siege.â€ť
â€śA further increase in the length of blackouts is likely to lead to a total collapse of basic services, including critical functions in the health, water and sanitation sectors,â€ť he warned.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, Hamas, which controls the Strip, said that Israel and the Palestinian authority President Mahmoud Abbas were jointly responsible for the â€ścatastrophic consequencesâ€ť of the reduction.
06/16/17Â PA Cuts Gaza Medical Supplies by 90%
Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip and continues, into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.