The Palestinian Authority (PA) has cut the salaries of 263 employees from Gaza's Ministry of Health, most of whom are doctors, as well as a further 400 employees from the Education Ministry, mainly teachers.
Spokespersons for both ministries announced the numbers in separate statements yesterday, stressing that cutting the salaries of public employees is a "flagrant violation" of their rights.
The ministries condemned the move and warned that cutting employees' salaries would negatively affect their capacity to provide services, further compounding the fact that the ministries have not received administrative and operational expenses from the PA for years.
It is worth noting that the cuts only affected PA employees in Gaza, as well as the families of the people who are killed, wounded or arrested by the Israeli army.
Gaza has been under a strict Israeli siege for 12 years and the PA has imposed punitive measures on the besieged enclave since April 2017, starting with slashing salaries by 25 per cent, then 50 per cent, as well as forcing 7,000 employees into retirement.
In 2007, the PA asked its employees in Gaza to stay home as a countermeasure against Hamas, which governs the Strip and with which Fatah – which dominates the PA – is engaged in a bitter feud. The PA cut the salaries of thousands of employees who did not implement this decision and stay home.