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West Bank teachers to strike Sunday, Thursday

Feb. 16, 2013 5:21 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 19, 2013 3:18 P.M.)
NABLUS (Ma'an) – All schools across the West Bank will be on general strike Sunday and Thursday, the general union of West Bank teachers announced Saturday.

Secretary of the union of south Nablus area teachers Izz Dawabsha told Ma’an the decision to go on strike was taken unanimously in a meeting the union of West Bank teachers held Saturday.

The move, he said, comes to protest failure of the Palestinian government to pay January wages, highlighting that Thursday's strike will be cancelled if salaries are paid before then.

But on Thursday government employees union chief Bassam Zakarneh insisted the PA must set a date to pay January wages, after a meeting with ministers in Ramallah.

Zakarneh said in a statement that the union informed a ministerial committee that government staff were struggling to buy basic necessities and could not afford transport to work.

Zakarneh called on civil servants not to strike unless further action is announced.

Since November, Israel has withheld Palestinian tax revenue it collects on behalf of the PA, exacerbating the government's financial crisis.

The PA's 153,000 public sector workers have received partial salaries, which have repeatedly been paid late.
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