Lack of fuel from Israel
brought Gaza's lone power plant to a halt on Friday, days after it was fired back to life following a seven-week shutdown, Gaza's electricity company said.
However, a security source denied the claim, and told Ynet that Hamas
was responsible for the power outage because of its unwillingness to foot the bill for fuel purchased by the Palestinian Authority.
"The plant stopped working on Friday morning due to a lack of fuel caused by Israel's closure of the Kerem Shalom crossing," an electric company official from Gaza said.
Israel closed the crossing to the Palestinian territory on Tuesday following a series of violent cross-border incidents earlier in the week.
However, a security source refuted the claim and said the fuel shortage was caused by an internal dispute between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas, which has refused to pay for the fuel the PA purchases from Israel.
According to the Palestinian official, the closure of the power station means that electricity supplies to Gaza would be limited to six hours a day as opposed to the usual 12 hours a day.
The plant, which supplies some 30 percent of Gaza's electricity needs, had previously fallen silent on November 1 as stocks of diesel ran out.
The power station returned to life on December 15 after receiving a delivery of fuel purchased from Israel by the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority using funds donated by Qatar.
The PA helped facilitate the delivery via Israel, which Hamas does not recognize and thus supposedly does not directly conduct relations with.
The Kerem Shalom crossing was closed
on Tuesday following a series of cross-border exchanges between Israel and Gaza terrorists after the fatal shooting of an Israeli Defense Ministry contract worker engaged in maintenance work on the northern Israel-Gaza border fence by a Palestinian sniper.