RAMALLAH, July 24, 2014 – (WAFA) – Minister of Information and Communication Technology Allam Mousa condemned Thursday Israeli Army targeting of telecommunications and internet across Gaza as well as post offices in Rafah.
Mousa stated that Israel targeted the telecommunications and internet network given their knowledge of the importance in exchanging information, relief efforts and making emergency appeals.
The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector sustained damages due to the Israeli military aggression on Gaza. Many ICT sector employees were either killed or injured while trying to respond to failures and breakdowns. Jamming signals were sent by Israel on the same frequencies used by local radio and TV stations for the purpose of sending messages of threat and intimidation to Gaza population. Besides, many landline networks and mobile phone transmitters were targeted which led to service interruptions in a number of area across Gaza.
Mousa lashed out at Israel for targeting the post offices that are ‘a symbol for Palestinian sovereignty’ and pointed to the massive service breakdown across the Gaza Strip.
Out of 500 Jawwal transmission stations across the besieged coastal enclave, 126 stations stopped operating and 11 have been completely destroyed due to Israeli bombardment. Only 8% of Jawwal transmission stations are electricity-based, 44% are electricity-generator-based, and yet other 205 are battery-based. 28% of the cellular company transmission stations are not functioning. If Israel presses ahead with its aggression, electricity station and Jawwal transmitters will run out of diesel which would cripple telecommunication services in the sector significantly. Jawwal is (the main Palestinian Provider for communication services company).
Mousa noted that his ministry has been in contact with telecommunications companies to assess their damages and offer necessary technical support and that it has submitted complaints to the International Telecommunication Union Secretary-General as well as to the Universal Postal Union.