Day 7 of Gaza Blackout: No Electricity or Internet as Israeli Onslaught Continues

12:00 Jan 19 2024 Gaza (غزة)

Day 7 of Gaza Blackout: No Electricity or Internet as Israeli Onslaught Continues
Info Graphic. Published by IMEMC News

by IMEMC News
Jan 19, 2024

Palestinians in the diaspora around the world, and those in the West Bank and in what is now Israel have been unable to reach loved ones in Gaza for seven days straight, as Israeli forces have cut all telecommunications, internet, phone and electricity to Gaza. The only communications that have gotten through over the past week have been from the few journalists still remaining that have satellite communications or the spotty internet available at the few remaining medical facilities, although these have been repeatedly bombed this past week – particularly Nasser Hospital.

The NetBlocks website, which monitors communications networks in the world, said that “the outage, which is now entering its eighth day, is the longest continuous communications outage ever” since the beginning of the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip on October 7th .

Last Friday, the Palestinian telecommunications companies Paltel and Ooredoo Palestine announced the complete cessation of communications and Internet services with the Gaza Strip due to the ongoing Israeli aggression.

Paltel said in a post: “We regret announcing a complete interruption of all services (cellular, fixed, and Internet) with the Gaza Strip, due to the ongoing aggression.”

In turn, Ooredoo said in a similar post: “With the continuation of the aggression against the Gaza Strip, the main lines feeding telecommunications and Internet companies were repeatedly damaged, which led to the cessation of all our services in the south and center of the Gaza Strip.”

For his part, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology for Palestine, Ihab Sobeih, verified that communications (cellular, fixed, Internet) were cut off again from the Gaza Strip, completely in the center and south, while the “Ooredoo” service is still working in the north. .

He pointed out in a statement that the Palestinian Telecommunications Company “Paltel”, which provides service in these areas, was unable to reach the exchange due to the lack of safe paths and the difficulty of movement as a result of the massive destruction of the roads, in addition to the scarcity of spare parts .

He pointed out that the communications sector has suffered from continuous targeting during the occupation’s aggression on the Gaza Strip, where the extent of the destruction reached more than 80%, in addition to the exposure of technical crews to direct targeting while carrying out their work, despite prior coordination through international institutions.

Last Saturday, the Palestinian Telecommunications Company announced that Israeli forces targeted and killed two of its crew members: Nader Abu Hajjaj and Bahaa Al-Rayes, while they were working to repair the communications network in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. According to the company, Israeli forces directly targeted the company’s vehicle with a missile.

This brings the number of Paltel communications workers who have been killed by Israeli forces since the beginning of the aggression to 13.

This is at least the seventh time that communications with the Gaza Strip have been completely cut off since the start of the aggression. Network he lines, networks and transmission towers were damaged as a result of the massive destruction caused by the aggression to the infrastructure, and the lack of fuel due to the siege, which led to repeated interruptions, pressure on the network and weak transmission in various parts of the Gaza Strip.

The interruption of communications and the Internet is accompanied by an escalation in the massacres committed by the occupation forces against our people in the Gaza Strip, in addition to the disruption of efforts to rescue and treat citizens, as the number of Palestinians killed since the beginning of the aggression has risen to more than 24,620, in addition to more than 61,830 wounded, and thousands of missing persons.

In this context, the Palestine Red Crescent Society announced a complete loss of communication with its crews working in the Gaza Strip due to the Israeli occupation cutting off communications and Internet services .

The association said in a statement, “The cut off of communications increases the challenges facing the Red Crescent crews in providing their ambulance services and reaching the wounded and injured as quickly as possible.”
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