Telecommunications services, including landlines, mobile networks, and the Internet, are being incrementally restored in the Gaza Strip, according to an announcement by the Palestinian Telecommunications Company (Paltel) on Network X.
This restoration process, while indicative of some semblance of normalcy, occurs even as the Israeli military persists with its attacks on the region.
Reconnecting Families Amidst Adversity
Following the cut-off, residents of Gaza, upon discovering the partial restoration of telecommunication services, rushed to re-establish contact with their family members.
Al Jazeera's Safwat Kahlout, reporting from the besieged area, painted a poignant picture of the last day's events. "The past 24 hours," he expressed, "have been the most challenging of the recent three weeks." The inability to reach out and check on the well-being of loved ones immediately after airstrikes intensified the distress.
Interestingly, Kahlout, who possesses one of the rare international eSim cards in the region, became a beacon of hope for many during this blackout.
We are pleased to announce that telecommunication services (landline, mobile, and internet) in Gaza Strip, disrupted on Friday, October 27, 2023, due to the ongoing aggression, are gradually being restored.
1/2 — Paltel (@Paltelco) October 29, 2023
"I have been inundated with calls and messages from concerned individuals outside Gaza, pleading with me to verify the safety of their families and relatives," Kahlout shared, shedding light on the dire circumstances and the desperate need for communication.
In its statement, Paltel emphasized the uphill task faced by its technical teams, who are "working tirelessly to address the damage to the internal network infrastructure, even under daunting conditions." Their efforts have been corroborated by Palestinian media agencies and the Internet monitoring group, NetBlocks.
Unabated Airstrikes Compound Crisis
While the communication infrastructure sees a gradual revival, the situation on the ground remains grim. Israeli airstrikes have escalated, especially in the northern parts of the Gaza Strip.
Recent strikes targeted Jabalia in the north and Khan Younis in the south. The latter resulted in considerable devastation: a residential structure was hit, leading to the tragic loss of four lives and injuring 20 others. Rescue teams are fervently working to recover survivors.
Further complicating matters, Al Jazeera reported continued Israeli artillery bombardments along the border. Concurrently, skirmishes between Palestinian militias and Israeli forces have been noted. The tug-of-war between the restoration of basic services and the ceaseless conflict underscores the fragile state of affairs in Gaza, where the quest for normalcy is a daily challenge.