Palestinian gov't pays part of salaries to workers

September 28, 2006 16:12

The Palestinian government on Thursday paid partial salaries to 165,000 civil servants who haven't received their full wages in months due to an economic embargo on the Palestinian Authority. The payments of US$350 (€275) come from money donated to the government by Qatar and Saudi Arabia, Acting Palestinian Finance Minister Samir Abu Eisha told a press conference. Qatar gave US$65 million (€51 million) and Saudi Arabia gave US$15 million (€12 million), he said. Israel and the West froze economic ties with the Palestinian Authority after the militant Hamas group took power in March. Hamas has refused international demands that it recognize Israel, accept signed peace agreements and renounce violence. With the aid cut off, the government has been unable to pay the full salaries to its workers, a major part of the Palestinian workforce. Government workers, including teachers, doctors and security officers, have repeatedly staged strikes demanding the salaries.

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