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Israel threatens to cut electricity supply to Palestinian towns

July 10, 2020 at 12:38 pm

A worker at the site of an electricity plant near the West Bank town of Jenin on 10 July 2017 [JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP/Getty Images]

Israel has threatened to cut the electricity supply to several Palestinian towns in the occupied West Bank to “blackmail” the Palestinian leadership after the latter’s decision to severe coordination with the Israeli authorities over Tel Aviv’s plan to annex large parts of the occupied territories, Palestinian Minister of Local Government, Majdi Al-Saleh, said.

In a statement, Al-Saleh condemned Israel’s “aggressive” threats and said: “This is exploitation of the epidemiological situation that the country and the whole world are going through.”

He called on international and human rights institutions and the Red Cross to intervene to stop Israel’s inhuman practices which threaten the work of all health facilities at this critical time.

The Israeli authorities have notified 47 local councils that they will cut their electricity supply.

READ: Israel facing ‘greatest economic crises in its history’

Israel had already cut off electricity from some towns including Tafooh and Bani Naim in Hebron and others in Jenin disrupting the work of health care centres used to test and treat COVID-19 patients.

The mayor of Yaabad town near Jenin said the Israeli authorities have cut off the electricity supply on the pretext that debts haven’t been paid. The mayor refuted the allegations, saying the municipality and the Yaabad Electricity Authority have all the official documents proving bills had been settled.

Israel has been trying to open direct channels of communication with the Palestinian towns and villages and circumvent the Palestinian Authority’s decision to severe communication with it over Tel Aviv’s plans to annex large areas of the occupied West Bank.