01:58 GMT27 September 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Israel suspended its supply of fuel to the Gaza Strip on 25 June as a countermeasure to several explosive-laden balloons launched from the Palestinian territory, a spokesman for the Israel Defence Forces said.

    "Due to the incendiary balloons launched from the Gaza Strip against the Israeli territories with an aim to cause fire in [Israeli] regions surrounding Gaza, it was decided that fuel supplies to a power station in the Gaza Strip through a border crossing would be suspended from today and until further notice", Avichay Adraee, a member of the IDF Arab media division, said on his Twitter.

    The statement comes after fire balloons from Gaza caused at least 13 fires in southern Israel on 24 June, with two of them lasting well into the night of 25 June.

    Israel imposed a maritime blockade on Gaza on 12 June after several of these balloons caused eight fires in the country's south. The blockade was eased a week later.

    The Palestinians have been seeking diplomatic recognition for their independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which are partially occupied by Israel, and the Gaza Strip.

    In March 2018, the conflict escalated, with Palestinians launching weekly protests dubbed the "Great March of Return" on the Gaza border, which has led to over 300 of them being killed by Israeli forces.


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    arson balloons, Gaza Strip, Palestinian Authority, Israel
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