Friday, November 30, 2007

Israel Supreme Court Approves Fuel Cutbacks

BBC News—Court Approves Gaza Fuel Cutbacks

The Supreme Court in Israel has approved fuel cutbacks to the Gaza strip. Human rights groups describe the move by the Supreme Court as “illegal collective punishment.” The Israeli government responded to these human rights groups by arguing that the cutbacks are economic sanctions to defend against the attacks by Palestinian militants.

The Islamist movement Hamas has controlled the Gaza strip since June. The Supreme Court told the state they must delay electricity cuts that were supposed to be implemented on Sunday. The Court expects that this decision will prevent electricity cuts to Gaza by the military. However, human rights groups continue to believe that the Court will not intervene in the fuel cuts.

Some have suspected that the court ruling was aimed at “increasing the siege on Gaza.” Petroleum companies have begun protesting against the Israeli fuel cuts. As a result, the petroleum companies stopped accepting fuel shipments. The head of the Gaza petroleum companies said that 100 of the 150 petroleum stations closed because of the shortages.

What was the true motive behind the Israeli Supreme Court decision? What other markets will be affected as a result of these shortages?

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