Israel prepares to implement Phase II of fuel cuts to Gaza

Israeli human rights groups say they have submitted a new petition to the Israeli High Court to stop the state from instituting a second phase of even deeper fuel cuts to Gaza starting next Sunday.  Up to 43% of the amount of gasoline (or petrol) ordered by Palestinians in October will be withheld, starting next Sunday.

On 28 October, the Israeli Defense Ministry began fuel cuts. On 2 December, fuel supplies to Gaza were supposed to be reduced by a further 15%, but the amounts of cuts of different types of fuel have reportedly varied.

Now, in a press release distributed on Christmas evening, the Israeli organization GISHA said that “the state announced that it would deepen the cut in gasoline (petrol) to Gaza, beginning Sunday, December 30, to up to 43% of the amount provided before the cuts. Yesterday, Gisha and Adalah asked the court for a preliminary injunction against this further cut, but no decision has yet been given. The two organizations said that “The fuel cuts, which began in October, have already caused severe damage to vital institutions in Gaza”.

However, Gisha noted, “the state said yesterday that it would temporarily restore diesel supplies to Gaza, which had also been cut. The cuts in the various types of fuel have paralyzed some operations in hospitals and clinics and deprived tens of thousands of people of access to clean water. Garbage has been piling up in the streets, because there is no gas for sanitation trucks … which controls Gaza ‘ s borders, sells fuel and electricity to Gaza and does not allow fuel to be imported any other way”.

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