Shell never announced plans to develop its 1tcf Gaza Marine discovery, which it inherited after acquiring British firm BG Group in 2016, and the Anglo-Dutch major now wants out of offshore Gaza altogether.

A Shell spokesman told Reuters earlier this month that it is in “discussions with various parties about the future of the Gaza Marine project.” But finding a party willing to take on its 55% stake (and surrounding political baggage) is highly unlikely in the current context. Since Israel withdrew its settlements and military engagement from the 365 km2 territory in 2005. Islamist governing party Hamas and the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have fought three wars in addition to almost monthly spats. Relations between Hamas and West Bank-based Fatah, which controls the Palestine Authority (PA), aren’t much better. PA president Mahmoud Abbas accused Hamas this week of the recent failed attempt to assassinate his Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah. (CONTINUED - 953 WORDS)