First Published: 2008-04-07

 
UNRWA staff go on strike in Jordan
 

Most of UNRWA's 7,000 employees demand second pay rise to meet high living costs in Jordan.

 

Middle East Online

Empty school

AMMAN - Thousands of staff of the cash-strapped UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees in Jordan held a one-day strike on Monday to demand pay rises to meet rising living costs in the kingdom.

"The majority of UNRWA's 7,000 employees in Jordan went on strike today, affecting the agency's educational and health services," agency spokesman Matar Saqr told AFP.

They are pushing for a second rise of around 50 dinars (more than 70 dollars) a month, Saqr said.

"UNRWA employees have already received increases of between 45 to 50 dinars at the beginning of this year, but the workers feel that they need another raise to meet the current high living costs," he said.

They plan to go on indefinite strike from April 14 if their demands are not met, he added.

"As a humanitarian agency, UNRWA believes that going on strike is not a solution."

The UN agency provides education to 123,000 pupils at 177 schools in Jordan, as well as health services at 24 centres, Saqr said.

In all, UNRWA cares for some 4.2 million Palestinian refugees in the Middle East, around 1.8 million of them in Jordan, but the agency faces a 100 million dollar funding gap in its 2008 budget of 542 million dollars.

Prices in Jordan have risen sharply this year, with the cost of domestic fuel up by 76.1 percent since January and electricity prices up by as much as 38 percent.

Food prices have also risen and the International Monetary Fund projects inflation of nine percent in 2008, up from 5.4 percent last year.

 

Sudan clamps down on journalists covering bread protests

Tribal feuds spread fear in Iraq's Basra

UN warns of "lost generation" in South Sudan's grinding conflict

Trump dashes Netanyahu’s hope to move US embassy to Jerusalem

US to overtake Saudi as world’s second crude oil producer

Aid for millions of Palestinians hostage to politics

Lebanon thwarts holiday attacks using IS informant

Mortar fire wounds 14 in Syria mental hospital

Turkish military fires on Kurdish forces in Syria's Afrin

More than 32,000 Yemenis displaced in intensified fighting

Saudi's refined oil exports offset crude curbs

Turkey's EU minister rejects any option other than full membership

Turkey says not reassured by US comments on border force

UN chief wants to revive Syria gas attack probe

US has no intention to build border force in Syria

Lebanese intelligence service may be spying using smartphones worldwide

Egypt's Sisi sacks intelligence chief

Cyprus denies bail for Israeli organ trafficker

Rising Yemen currency sparks hopes of relief

Turkish ministries to investigate underage pregnancy cover-up

Iraq PM launches online appeal for election allies

Iran central bank sees claim for billions from German stock market blocked

Iraq signs deal with BP to develop Kirkuk oil fields

Israeli occupation forces raid Jenin, kill Palestinian

HRW chief says 'Nobody should be forcibly returned to Libya'

IS poses threat to Iraq one month after 'liberation'

Seven years since ousting dictator, Tunisians still protest

Iran says Trump jeopardising Airbus deals

China says Iranian oil tanker wreck located

Sudan arrests communist leader after protests

Syrian opposition joins condemnation of US 'border force'

Israeli judge detains teen until trial for viral ‘slap video’

Arab league slams US freeze of Palestinian funding

Dubai billionaire to sell 15 percent Damac stake

Britain to put women at heart of peace work in Iraq, Nigeria, South Sudan

Saudi to give Yemen government $2bn bailout

US withholds $65 million from UN agency for Palestinians

Saudi Arabia intercepts new Yemen rebel missile attack

Syria Kurds vow to cleanse enclave from Turkish 'scourges'

Israeli police find missing Briton’s belongings in desert

Algeria gas plant workers mark five years since jihadist siege

UN says over 5000 children killed or injured in Yemen war

European leaders’ response to Iran protests raises questions

Erdogan to visit Pope Francis next month

Iran slams US-backed 'border security force' in Syria