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Israel begins reducing power to Gaza

ANI  |  Jerusalem [Israel] 

on Monday reduced the amount of electricity it provides to the Strip, acceding to a request from the Palestinian Authority to put pressure on Hamas.

The decision will shorten the daily average of four hours of power to Gaza's two million residents by 45 minutes, Israel's security cabinet said.

Human rights groups have warned of a humanitarian crisis as the electricity shortages could leave schools, hospitals and businesses unable to operate fully. Clean water supplies in the Strip have begun to dwindle.

had been supplying 125 megawatt-hours to and has been the Strip's main source of power for over two months, leaving the Hamas-ruled territory with just four to six hours of power a day. Israel's Prime Minister said: "Providing electricity to the Strip is an internal Palestinian issue."

and the Palestinian Authority "will bear responsibility for the grave deterioration" in Gaza's health and environmental situation, the Independent quoted Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum as saying.

The West Bank-based Palestinian Authority (PA) had blamed Hamas's failure to reimburse it for electricity for the reduction in power supplies. "We renew the call to the Hamas movement and the de facto government there to hand over to us all responsibilities of government institutions in so that the government can provide its best services to our people in Gaza, "PA spokesman Tareq Rashmawi said .

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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