updated 3/20/2008 4:56:01 PM ET 2008-03-20T20:56:01

Israeli defense officials say they've worked out a tentative deal for Egypt to become the main electricity supplier to the Gaza Strip.

The officials say the agreement, announced Thursday, stems from Israel's desire to cut ties with Gaza. Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005, but remains the area's main power supplier.

If the deal goes through, Egypt is expected to build a power line and supply 150 megawatts to Gaza.

Israel has imposed a blockade on the territory and small cuts to its electricity supplies. The sanctions are an attempt to force Gaza's Hamas rulers to stop firing rockets into southern Israel.

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