Gaza officials: Egypt crackdown causes fuel crisis

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Officials in the Gaza Strip say an Egyptian military crackdown on smuggling tunnels has led to dire shortages of fuel in the Palestinian territory.

Fuel used to be brought from Egypt to Gaza through the tunnels. But Hamas spokesman Islam Shahwan says Egypt has closed or destroyed dozens of the tunnels along the Egypt-Gaza border in recent weeks, and almost no tunnels are now in use.

Palestinians are lining up at gas stations, and daily power outages last up to 14 hours.

Mohammed Al-Abdullah, spokesman for the Gaza oil companies union, says only a few gas stations are stocked with fuel reserves. He says fuel transfers from Israel will be limited because of upcoming Jewish holidays, and will not suffice for Gaza’s electrical plant.

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