Israeli settlers scuffle with police at West Bank outpost demolition

Israeli police surround a structure as an Israeli settler stands atop the structure near an Israeli flag and a banner, in the Netiv Haavot neighbourhood in the West Bank settlement of Elazar, which is slated for demolition by March 2018 November 29, 2017. (Reuters)
Updated 30 November 2017
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Israeli settlers scuffle with police at West Bank outpost demolition

NETIV HAAVOT, Palestinian Territories: Jewish settlers scuffled with Israeli police in the occupied West Bank on Wednesday in an unsuccessful attempt to stop the demolition of a building at a rogue settlement outpost.
AFP journalists said hundreds of young settlers at Netiv Haavot, in the Etzion settlement block, barricaded themselves in a carpentry workshop and resisted orders to leave peacefully.
They set fire to vehicle tires festooned with barbed wire to try to block access to the building but riot police and border police broke through and carried the protesters away.
“Security forces completed the demolition of the illegal structure,” an army statement said. There were no reports of arrests or injuries.
Several homes at the outpost, a satellite of Elazar settlement, are also to be demolished by court order, but residents have until March 2018 before the ruling is implemented.
The court accepted Palestinian claims that they were built on private Palestinian land and must be vacated.
About 430,000 Israeli settlers live in the West Bank — occupied in the 1967 Six-Day War — among 2.6 million Palestinians.
The settlements are illegal under international law and seen by a large part of the international community as a main obstacle to peace between Israelis and Palestinians.
The Etzion bloc has over the years grown into a large cluster of settlements south of Jerusalem, and officials expect it to form part of Israel under any future peace deal with the Palestinians.
 


New social deal signed in Morocco, salaries to rise

Updated 26 April 2019
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New social deal signed in Morocco, salaries to rise

  • The minimum wage, currently 2,570 dirhams a month ($266), will be increased by 10 percent over two years from July
  • Last July King Mohammed VI urged the government to take “urgent action” to address social issues

RABAT: The Moroccan government on Thursday announced a “new social deal” with employers and the main labor unions, under which many workers will enjoy a pay rise.
The deal agreed by the General Confederation of Moroccan Businesses (CGEM) and the three main unions — the UMT, UGTM and UNMT — is the fruit of months of negotiations
The minimum wage, currently 2,570 dirhams a month ($266), will be increased by 10 percent over two years from July, except for the agricultural sector.
Government-paid family allowances will also rise.
Meanwhile public sector workers will be given a 300-500 dirham monthly pay increase over three years.
Of Morocco’s main trade unions only the Democratic Labour Confederation has not signed the social deal which, according to the government statement, is aimed at “improving spending power and the social climate.”
Last July King Mohammed VI urged the government to take “urgent action” to address social issues, in particular health and education in the north African country which has been hit by protests over employment and corruption.
Mohammed VI pointed to social support and social protection programs that “overlap each other, suffer from a lack of consistency and fail to effectively target eligible groups.”
After months of stalemate, the dossier was handed to the interior ministry at the beginning of the year and the final rounds of talks were held.
The social unrest began in October 2016 after the death of a fisherman and spiralled into a wave of protests demanding more development in the neglected Rif region and railing against corruption and unemployment.
Morocco is marked by glaring social and territorial inequalities, against a backdrop of high unemployment among young people. In 2018, it was ranked 123rd out of 189 countries and territories on the Human Development Index.