Dozens of street vendors protested in front of the parliament building Thursday morning after Hamas security forces cleared 200 stands from Gaza's main downtown square.
Zaki Sheik, a spokesman for Hamas' Executive Force, said the sweep was to remove "all obstacles and obstructions that cause traffic jams." The city offered the displaced vendors two alternative locations nearby, he said.
About 150 vendors joined Thursday's protest, saying business will not be as good in the new locations. 1 Said Abu Jazar, 29, who sold mobile phone accessories in the square to support his parents, his two unemployed brothers and his three children, said he did not oppose efforts to better organize street businesses.
"But this way we are going to lose business because no one is going to walk to the place they want us to go," Abu Jazar said.