The EU has announced it is to provisionally resume payments of fuel to provide electricity for Gaza. It had stopped funding for the fuel on Friday, meaning the strip’s main power plant had to cut off supply to large parts of Gaza’s population. Many shops and businesses were forced to use their own generators.
The Union said it had received information suggesting Hamas was siphoning off money from electricity bills. But Hamas chief Ismael Haniyeh assured Brussels his party was not pocketing revenues. He also said he would welcome investigators to come and see for themselves.
The EU was acting on information it had received from Hamas’ political rival, Fatah. A spokesperson said: “We were led to understand that there were attempts by Hamas to divert the funds away from going directly back into the power plant and of course any attempt to do so we need to investigate. It’s just part of our policy making sure we are spending this money appropriately.”
Now the EU has people in Gaza to monitor the situation. It will resume payments as of Wednesday on a provisional basis, having seemingly given Haniyeh the benefit of any doubt.