Hamas fires Fatah-affiliated schoolteachers in Gaza
The conflict between Fatah and Hamas in the Gaza Strip has reached the schools, where Hamas has removed from their positions teachers and principals who are affiliated with Fatah.
The dismissals occurred a week ago, on the eve of the new school year. In response, the Fatah teachers' union went on strike and refused to teach in the schools.
Hamas, in power in the Gaza Strip since June 2007, appears to have prepared for such an eventuality, and replaced the Fatah teachers with some 2,000 new staff, most of whom completed their teachers' training in recent months.
For their part, the striking teachers found themselves in a difficult spot: They have been warned by the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority in Ramallah that if they broke the strike they would no longer receive salaries.
Meanwhile, Hamas security forces raided the offices of the Fatah-affiliated Palestinian Teachers Association in Gaza, and also arrested many teachers with Fatah links, questioning them for several hours before releasing them.
Need for fuel
The water and coast authority in Gaza has requested an urgent supply of 30,000 liters of fuel in order to continue operating the Strip's water and sewage pumps. The request was made to a United Nations aid agency, after officials said that they had not received any fuel since August 1 because the authorities in Ramallah did not make the necessary payments.
According to Palestinian officials, some 250,000 residents of the Gaza Strip have no running water, and tens of thousands of liters of untreated sewage is flowing to the sea.
UN aid sources provided the water authority in Gaza some 20,000 liters of fuel earlier this week.