Following Reports of a Gaza Deal, Hamas Says It Will Pay Officials' Salaries

Hamas and the Palestinian factions are celebrating what they see as a victory of the weekly border protests

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Gaza Finance Ministry director, Yusuf Al-Kayali, at a press conference, November 6, 2018.
Gaza Finance Ministry director, Yusuf Al-Kayali, at a press conference, November 6, 2018.

Gaza's Finance Ministry will pay officials 60 percent of their July salaries as part of talks to ease violence along the Gaza border, the ministry's director-general, Yusuf Al-Kayali, said Tuesday evening.

Reports from Gaza said that the payment was authorized during joint talks to end violence in the area and that Qatar would foot the bill for the salaries. Egypt and the United Nations' special Mideast envoy, Nickolay Mladenov are involved in the negotiations.

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Hamas and Palestinian factions celebrated Tuesday night what they see as a victory after months of weekly border protests to lift the siege. A statement was issued saying that the easing of restrictions had been a result of the sacrifice of the residents of Gaza who persisted in the demonstrations and that they were not achieved in exchange for any diplomatic initiative by Israel or any other country.

“The achievements are reinforcing the steadfastness of the Palestinian people for the sake of realizing their full rights which were taken from them due to the siege,” the statement said.

At the same time, Youssef Ibrahim, director general of the Gaza Welfare Ministry said that his office would pay 700 shekels ($190) to each family that lost children in the border protests. A sum of $100 would be paid to another 50,000 families in Gaza.

Ibrahim also presented a plan to absorb more employees which would help the 10,000 professionals living in Gaza find work. In addition, the Qatari rehabilitation committee for Gaza said its envoy to Gaza, Mohammed El-Amadi would head to Gaza in the coming days to announce new plans for infrastructure and humanitarian aid projects.

This comes after an increase in the number of daily hours of electricity supply to Gaza due to the fuel Qatar supplies to the power plant.

After publication of details of the agreement in the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhba newspaper, Israel announced it was extending the Gaza fishing zone off the coast while Hamas and the Palestinian factions look to reduce the violence during marches along the border fence.