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CNN wrote on Oct 26:

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) on Tuesday ruled out any fuel being allowed to enter Gaza, saying Hamas would co-opt fuel for its operational infrastructure and to continue its rocket attacks.

Israel has also disputed that there are fuel shortages in Gaza. Responding to the UNRWA’s post on X about low supplies, the IDF posted an aerial photo of what it said were fuel tanks in Gaza, and claimed they held more than 500,000 liters of fuel. CNN is unable to verify the IDF claim.

Hamas ability to divert stuff aside, who officially owns those fuel tanks? And have those owners, if identifiable, confirmed that they have/had those amounts?

As I see some comments question why this matters, saying that Hamas can openly requisition anything invoking war... True only to some extent. Openly requisitioning UN property or aid stuff would possibly put them in ever more trouble. See e.g. Biden conveying the threat to cut off aid if it's diverted by Hamas (although he was probably more of a messenger there). So IMHO it's not entirely irrelevant who formally owns stuff, even in wartime, in Gaza.

The JNS for example released this (captioned) photo:

enter image description here

with the headline "Israel releases photos of massive Hamas fuel stockpiles".

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    It's been a couple weeks since then, so those kinds of claims shouldn't be hard to investigate, when e.g. al-Jazeera says they tracked whoever built an underground entrance to a hospital (which they say--contra IDF--it's just a water tank.) Unlike that kind of dispute, which is still in doubt [who can tell if Hamas didn't dig from the water tank further], whether there was fuel in some giant surface tanks and who owned them should be something journalists could have mustered to figure out with less uncertainty since then. Commented Nov 8, 2023 at 11:51

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+50

From a CNN Live News feed, 9:33 p.m. ET, October 26, 2023 —

On Gaza's dwindling fuel supplies: Hagari also reiterated that Israel would not allow fuel into Gaza for now, saying that Hamas’ arrays are “struggling to function” without fuel and blaming Hamas for stealing fuel from a facility belonging to the main United Nations agency aiding Palestinians, UNRWA.

Israel has also disputed that there are fuel shortages in Gaza. Responding to a post from UNRWA about low supplies, the IDF on Tuesday posted an aerial photo of what it said were fuel tanks in Gaza, claiming they held more than 500,000 liters of fuel. CNN is unable to verify the IDF claim.

"The facility that was posted (on Tuesday) is located in Rafah and belongs to UNRWA. … We supervise it aerially and together with UNRWA. Again, we’re not striking UNRWA. On the contrary, we’re making an effort along with the international community to ensure that south of Wadi Gaza, there will be conditions that allow the civilian population to access water, food and drugs," he said. [Emboldening added.]

From Reuters November 13, 2023 7:54 AM EST —

The U.N. Palestinian refugee agency's fuel depot in Gaza has run dry and within a few days UNRWA will no longer be able to resupply hospitals, remove sewage and provide drinking water, its chief said on Monday.

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While I can't answer your question, I made some research and I'll write down what I found so far.

The tanks are located about 800 meters north of Rafah crossing at the Gaza-Egypt border. UNRWA imports diesel fuel from Egypt so this depot is probably used to offload Egyptian shipments before it is distributed across the Gaza strip. According to Reuters, UNRWA recently warned that its Gaza fuel depot is now empty. While it is possible that UNRWA is referring to a different fuel depot in Gaza, it seem probable that it is referring to one located north of Rafah crossing.

It appears that the depot is not reserved for Hamas's use, because if was it would have been destroyed by Israel already. Unlike hospitals, there is no question that fuel depots for exclusive use by a party's armed forces constitute legitimate military targets.

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  • It's 800m North from the crossing, but otherwise right next to the wall with Egypt (from the map you linked). Commented Nov 14, 2023 at 23:50
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    Though the depot may not be officially reserved for Hamas is there any reason to believe Hamas cannot/would not use this fuel? Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 8:43
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    "It appears that the depot is not reserved for Hamas's use, because if was it would have been destroyed by Israel already." I don't understand this assumption. Hamas need fuels to their tunnels, and the hostages might be in their, so Israel sure not bombing there. Or the fuel is close to populated area. There's enough reasons I can think of, why the IDF didn't bomb those fuels.
    – USerNAme
    Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 11:04
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    Look at the map in the first link. The fuel depot is surrounded by desert and could be destroyed without causing any civilian casualties. It is not possible to say that Hamas does not siphons off fuel from the depot, however, the sources found so far indicate that the depot is primarily used by the UNRWA. Commented Nov 15, 2023 at 16:57

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