A Palestinian source yesterday denied Israeli reports that an Egyptian-Palestinian-Israeli agreement had been made to extract gas off the Gaza Strip, describing them as “inaccurate”.
The source, who preferred not to be named, told the Anadolu news agency that consultations with Egypt on developing the field did not mention the Israeli side at all, adding “we will not pay Israel to extract what belongs to us”.
“This is unacceptable. Israel is required not to obstruct the work only,” the source added.
On Monday, the Palestinian government announced the formation of a ministerial committee to follow up with the Palestinian Investment Fund on concluding an agreement with Egypt to finance and operate the Palestinian gas field off the Gaza Strip, known as the Gaza Marine Field.
On Tuesday, the Israeli Broadcasting Corporation (Kan) reported that “Egypt, Israel and the Palestinian Authority have agreed to develop the natural gas field off the Gaza Strip.” It added that profits from the field will go to the Palestinian Authority and Israel.
Located 36 kilometres west of Gaza, the Gaza Marine Field is believed to contain about 1.1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. This is equivalent to a production capacity of 1.5 billion cubic metres annually for a period of 20 years.