Egypt offers Gaza electricity in exchange for crackdown on security at border

Egypt has offered Hamas help with electricity in exchange for a list of security demands following Israel's announcement that it would withdraw some of the power it provides to the Strip.

June 13, 2017 09:01
1 minute read.
Gaza's power plant

A view shows Gaza's power plant through a barbed fence in the central Gaza Strip January 16, 2017. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Egypt extended an offer to Hamas to provide power to the Gaza Strip in exchange for security changes at the border, Ashraq Al-Awsat, the international Arab newspaper based in London, reported Tuesday morning.

According to the report, Cairo said it was willing to ease up restrictions at the Rafah crossing and provide additional humanitarian aid to the Strip if a list of security demands that was passed on to Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar will be met.

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Among Egypt's demands, according to Ashraq Al-Awsat, was a request to extradite 17 wanted terrorists to Egypt, a demand that Gaza crack down on security along the border between Sinai and the Strip as well as a demand that Hamas discontinue weapons smuggling to Sinai.

Earlier this week Hamas has warned of an “explosion” in the Gaza Strip after Israel’s security cabinet decided on Sunday to cut the amount of electricity the country provides to Gaza by 40%.

Last month, the Palestinian Authority told Israel that it would only pay NIS 25 million of the NIS 40m. monthly bill for 125 megawatts.

Late Sunday night, Israel ceded to that request, according to security sources.

“The Israeli occupation’s decision to reduce electricity to the strip at the behest of PA President Mahmoud Abbas is catastrophic and dangerous,” Hamas spokesman Abdel Latif al-Qanou said in an official statement.

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.

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