Qatar’s envoy for the Gaza Strip, Mohammed al Emadi, has warned the Islamic terrorist group Hamas that they will not extend payments for electricity in the Gaza Strip beyond April, according to a report on Israeli state television Kan.
Palestinian sources told Kan that the Qatari ambassador is frustrated by the intentional delays of major infrastructure projects for Gaza, including the establishment of a high-voltage line from Israel that would double the electricity in the Strip.
Qatar pledged to fund fuel for Gaza’s power plant for six months. Since November last year, it has transferred $10 million a month for that purpose. The agreement will expire in April and, according to the Qatari envoy, will not extend beyond that month.
However, Palestinian sources believe that it is possible that the threat from Qatar is intended to pressure the relevant factors in the Strip to accelerate major projects in the electrical sector.
Under the supervision of Al Emadi, Qatar has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into large-scale infrastructure projects including the rehabilitation of a hospital with state-of-the-art medical equipment, a new highway and skyscrapers. Al Emadi, an architect by profession, has frequently visited the Strip to personally supervise the projects.
The transfer of $10 million per month from Qatar for the purchase of fuel for Gaza’s only power plant has allowed the Palestinian inhabitants of the Strip to increase the hours of electricity supply from four to eight hours.
Israel has allowed Qatar to purchase fuel for Gaza in the hope that it will contribute to reducing protests and clashes at the border fence. But the measure has been furiously criticized by Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas, the rival of the Hamas group that controls Gaza, because his administration has been sidelined from negotiations.