Gaza salaries cut; no reasons stated

Saleh Naami in Gaza, Saturday 22 Jan 2011

As part of a ongoing Fatah initiative in Ramallah, the salaries of civil servants working in Gaza will be cut, as tensions persist between Hamas and its West Bank counterpart

Senior Fatah figure Maged Abu Shamala confirmed reports that Palestinian Authority (PA) Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, as part of an ongoing policy, is cutting salaries for civil servants working in the Gaza Strip.

In a statement issued by his office on Saturday, Shamala stated that tens of offices are cutting salaries, stressing that this is becoming “unacceptable both on the nationalist level and on the ethical.”

For his part, Shamala questioned the validity making such decisions without setting any reasons. Shamala explained that employees cannot reclaim their salaries unless approval is granted by both the security apparatus in the West Bank and Fayyad in person.

In fact, the PA government based in Ramallah used to confiscate the salary of any employee who was proven to have any linkage to the Palestinian government in Gaza headed by Premier Ismail Haniya.

Consequently, thousands of employees, according to Fatah MPs from Gaza, have seen their salaries slashed though alleged links were "mostly based on false reports.”

Moreover, Ramallah has rejected issuing any passports to citizens who are accused of being related to Haniya’s government. A rally took place a month ago in Gaza calling for the right of having passports regardless of their organisational affiliations.

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