Israel Cuts Fuel to Gaza

Government says reduction won't cause a humanitarian crisis
By Wesley Oliver,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 28, 2007 6:32 PM CDT
Ehud Barak, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of Israel speaks to reporters after his meeting with Secretary General ofthe United Nations Ban Ki-moon at U.N. Headquarters Friday, Oct. 19,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Israel cut Gaza’s fuel supply today in a bid to force the strip's Hamas government to curb rocket attacks on Israel. An Israeli official told the New York Times the plan was to cut deliveries 5 to 11%, but a Gazan official told the AP shipments were short by over 30%. Israel also closed one of two crossings through which food and medicine flow into Gaza.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak approved the fuel restrictions late last week, saying the cutbacks would apply pressure but not cause a humanitarian crisis. Ten Israeli and Palestinian humanitarian groups disagreed, and are petitioning to stop the reduction, CNN reports.  U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon objected to the measures, saying they amount to "collective punishment."