West Bank university to reopen after closure

February 26, 2007 16:21


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The West Bank's flagship university, Bir Zeit, was to reopen Tuesday, after a weeklong closure forced by cash-strapped students protesting attempts to collect tuition payments. The dispute was the latest sign of the sharp downturn in the economy as a result of a year-long international aid boycott of the Hamas government. Most sectors have suffered decline, including manufacturing, education and health care. Some 165,000 civil servants, whose salaries sustain about one-third of the Palestinians, have received only partial wages. Growing numbers of Bir Zeit's nearly 8,000 students have fallen behind in payments.

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