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Israel’s foreign, defence ministries’ employees strike 

Palestinians cross Qalandiya checkpoint to perform the first Friday Prayer of Islamic holy month of Ramadan at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, in Ramallah, West Bank on 10 May, 2019 [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]
Palestinians cross Qalandiya checkpoint in Ramallah, West Bank on 10 May 2019 [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]

Checkpoints in the occupied West Bank will be closed today as a result of strike being held by the employees of the Israeli foreign and defence ministries following a dispute about pay.

The Israeli Treasury had decided to reduce the wages of hundreds of military staff and envoys and Foreign Ministry ambassadors. However the crisis worsened as a result of the decision to backdate the ruling and not pay fees that were owed between January-September 2019.

“The Treasury is acting unilaterally and is imposing unacceptable conditions on us,” Defense Ministry chairman Sasson Peretz and Dana Benvenisti from the Foreign Ministry staff said according to the Jerusalem Post.

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The strike will leave up to 100,000 Palestinian workers unable to access their jobs in Israel, Quds Press reported.

In July, Haaretz reported that the Israeli Foreign Ministry faced a 350 million shekel ($100 million) budget shortfall, which led to several key national events being cancelled.

The newspaper also reported that the foreign ministry had suffered severe budget cuts in recent years mainly as a result of the Ministry of Strategic Affairs changeling funds into the battle against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

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