Popular anger over power cuts in Gaza during the cold winter erupted in a large protest. In a rare display of defiance against the Hamas authorities, 10,000 people took to the streets in Jabaliya, chanting slogans against Ismail Haniya, the leader of Hamas in Gaza, as well as against Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority. Outside the electricity company, protesters hurled stones and burned tires as the Hamas police fired their weapons into the air to disperse the crowd, the NY Times reports.
Arguments over taxation between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have contributed to the power cuts, with the supply of electricity down to only three or four hours a day. Smaller protests had been building all week. Hamas security forces detained Adel al-Mashoukhi, a comedian, hours after he posted on Facebook a video cursing the lack of electricity and shouting, “Enough, Hamas!” By Thursday night the video had nearly 300,000 views.