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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Zahar: Hamas will accept fuel through Israel via UNRWA

From Hamas' Palestine Times newspaper:
Leader of the Political Bureau of Hamas Dr. Mahmoud al-Zahar denied the report published by some Arab and Zionist media of a deal between Hamas and Egypt to accept the truce contingent on the introduction of fuel into the Gaza Strip, and said: "This is not true at all and has no basis in truth" .

Al-Zahar confirmed that there is nothing new on the subject of electricity, and expressed the approval of Hamas on the introduction of fuel for the Gaza Strip through the Kerem Shalom crossing by "UNRWA" for the power plant in the Gaza Strip.
So it looks like Hamas is going to allow fuel to reach Gaza via Israel after all, and is using UNRWA to make sure it does not receive the fuel directly, in a bizarre way to save face after depriving Gazans of fuel and power for well over a month now because of their refusal to do exactly that.

No confirmation yet from COGAT or UNRWA.

It is possible that by using this mechanism of going through UNRWA, Hamas will avoid giving taxes to the PA and will be able to tax it themselves. It will be interesting to find out how much Egypt (the presumed supplier) will be charging for the fuel.

Does this mean that UNRWA is going to be complicit in Hamas collecting taxes on fuel, and therefore in strengthening Hamas?