Water authority declares Gaza 'disaster zone'-UPDATED

The announcement comes after Israel bombed Gaza's only power plant, forcing a continued power outage across the embattled Gaza Strip.

Water authority declares Gaza 'disaster zone'-UPDATED

World Bulletin / News Desk

Gaza's water authority has declared the Palestinian strip a "disaster zone", saying that water and sewage services could not be provided to some 1.8 million Palestinians after Israeli forces targeted the enclave's only power plant.

"We are unable to perform our duties amid a total power outage and lack of fuel in Gaza," Rebhi al-Sheikh, deputy head of the Palestinian water authority, told reporters at al-Shifa hospital Thursday evening.

"We are no longer able to provide potable water to residential units, shelters or hospitals," he asserted.

On Tuesday, the Gaza Strip's only power plant was shut down after an Israeli attack hit the facility's fuel depot. The strike triggered a power outage across the blockaded strip amid a devastating Israeli offensive which has killed over 1422 Palestinians within less than a month.

Al-Sheikh called on the United Nations and other humanitarian organizations to "act quickly to prevent a real disaster" in Gaza's water services.

He also called for the protection of water service workers after six workers were killed in a "direct targeting" by Israeli forces.

PA to send 5mn litres of water to Gaza

The Palestinian Authority (PA) will send five million litres of potable water to the Gaza Strip to help assuage a severe water crisis in the bombed territory, an official has said.

"The Ramallah-based Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs will send five million litres of potable water to the Gaza Strip in the coming few hours through the U.N. Relief and Works Agency UNRWA," ministry undersecretary in Gaza Hasan al-Seifi told Anadolu Agency.

He said the move "aims at easing the water crisis in the Gaza Strip after Israel bombed water wells and pipelines and the strip's only power plant".

Israel has been pounding the Gaza Strip for the nearly past four weeks with fierce aerial, naval and ground assaults with the ostensible aim of halting rocket fire from the strip.

Gaza-based resistance factions, meanwhile, have continued to fire rocket at Israeli cities in response to relentless Israeli bombardments.

According to official Israeli figures, 56 Israeli soldiers and three civilians have been killed since the hostilities began.

Israel's military offensive, dubbed operation "Protective Edge," is the self-proclaimed Jewish state's third major offensive against the densely-populate Gaza Strip – which is home to some 1.8 million Palestinians – within the last six years.

In 2008/9, over 1500 Palestinians were killed in Israel's three-week-long operation "Cast Lead."

Güncelleme Tarihi: 01 Ağustos 2014, 12:53