Palestine pulls another strike: The public sector puts the breaks on
Public sector workers in Palestine have started a two-day general strike this Wednesday, kicking off 19 December.
The industrial action comes in response to Israel withholding tax revenues, which the Palestinian Authority depends on in order to pay government employees.
Israel is withholding $100 million of revenue, which it says is because of unpaid debts, but Israel’s decision is widely seen as being because of the PA's successful bid to be upgraded to ‘non-observer’ status at the United Nations in November this year.
The head of the government’s employees union, Bassam Zakarneh, was quoted by Reuters as saying , "This strike is against Israel's piracy."
The government is one of the largest employers in the West Bank, with 153,000 staff. Some 50,000 workers took part in the work-stoppages on Wednesday.
Israel has often halted the transfer of tax funds - which it collects under the 1994 Paris protocol - in response to political or diplomatic tensions between the two countries.