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PA, France sign agreements worth 19 million euros

Aug. 24, 2013 5:23 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 26, 2013 6:54 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Palestinian Authority on Saturday signed two agreements with France worth a total of 19 million euros ($25 million), a statement said.

Around 9 million euros ($12 million) will go towards paying the salaries of over 180,000 PA employees, while 10 million ($13 million) euros will be used to construct a solid waste treatment plant in the Gaza Strip.

"We asked for France's assistance to lift in total the blockade Israel has imposed on Gaza so that we can develop the Gaza Strip," caretaker PA prime minister Rami Hamdallah was quoted as saying by Wafa.

Hamdallah told the French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius that Israeli settlements obstruct the peace process and urged France to support projects in Area C and occupied East Jerusalem.

The caretaker PA prime minister is due to meet with EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton on Sept. 9 to discuss financial support for the PA's budget.
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