Power supplies to Gaza Strip cut even further

Abbas' government in Ramallah pays for a significant amount of Gaza's electricity. In fact, the writing was on the wall ever since Hamas' violent takeover of the Gaza Strip in June, 2007. On the other hand, pushing the militant organization to the brink may very well lead to a new conflict with Israel. The PA pays Israel £5.6m each month for electricity sent to Gaza and blames Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, for the severe power shortages there.

Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan said the reduction was due to an ongoing row between Abbas and his rivals Hamas, but he did not detail the scope of the cuts.

"It is clear the Gaza Strip is not Switzerland, but there is no humanitarian crisis", he said, citing the "hundreds" of trucks delivering goods each day.

Any solution must provide an answer to the financial issues, Israel's need for security guarantees, and the expected humanitarian price while also taking into consideration that any solution enforced while Hamas is in power will be viewed by Hamas as a win for their policy of terror.

Hamas in February elected Yahya Sinwar, a ruthless hardliner from its armed wing as its next leader in the Gaza Strip. Both Egypt and Israel have imposed a stringent border blockade on the territory since Hamas violently overtook power a decade ago.

PA official Tariq Reshmawi said for the past 10 years the authority has paid Israel $12.7 million dollars (11.3 million euros) and Egypt $2 million (1.8 million euros) every month for providing power to the strip.

A day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the electricity crisis in Gaza an internal Palestinian matter, a Palestinian Authority official rejected his claim.

The lack of funds, medicines and equipment is creating a humanitarian crisis, where one third of essential medicines is no longer available to patients along with a host of medical equipment needed for the everyday operation of medical facilities.

"The decision of the occupation to reduce the electricity to Gaza at the request of PA President Mahmoud Abbas is catastrophic and unsafe", Hamas spokesperson Abdel Latif al-Qanua said. The last Israeli military aggression, which ended on August 26, 2014, killed almost 2,200 Palestinians. Over 70 Israelis were also killed in the 7 weeks war.

Israeli troops invade West Bank communities and abduct civilians meanwhile navy ships attack Gaza fishermen.

Several Israeli politicians have stated that a future conflict with Hamas should end with toppling it.

"The people in Gaza should not be held hostage to this longstanding internal Palestinian dispute", he said.

Both the media and the politicians rarely discuss the situation in Gaza and it only reaches the headlines in times of crisis and violence.

Katz believes improving the economic situation in Gaza will deflate much of the tension.

Mr Tillerson told senators yesterday that Mr Abbas had changed the policy.