Protesters throw shoes, rip flags during visit to Gaza by Qatar envoy

Hospital workers upset over unpaid salaries try to approach Qatari diplomat, but are pushed backed by Hamas policemen

Khaled Abu Toameh is the Palestinian Affairs correspondent for The Times of Israel

Qatari envoy Mohammed Al-Emadi (C) leaves a press conference at the Dar al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, on February 19, 2018. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Abed)
Qatari envoy Mohammed Al-Emadi (C) leaves a press conference at the Dar al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, on February 19, 2018. (AFP Photo/Mohammed Abed)

Palestinians on Monday protested against Qatari envoy Mohammed al-Emadi while he was visiting the Gaza Strip.

One protester threw shoes at al-Emadi’s vehicle, while others ripped Qatari flags and damaged placards that thanked Qatar for its financial aid to the Gaza Strip.

Most of the protesters were hospital cleaners who have been on strike for the past week to protest unpaid salaries, sources in the Gaza Strip said.

The protests erupted immediately after a press conference, during which the Qatari official announced details of a $9 million emergency aid payment to address fuel and medicine shortages in the Gaza Strip.

The protesters tried to approach al-Emadi to talk to him, but were pushed back by Hamas policemen, according to witnesses.

Al-Emadi was whisked away in his vehicle under Hamas police escort. No one was hurt during the protests.

The protesters said they were disappointed with the Qatari envoy because he refused to address their plight during his statements.

Al-Emadi told the striking workers that the Palestinian Authority was the only party authorized to discuss the issue of their unpaid salaries. Terror group Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007.

The Palestinian companies hiring the hospital cleaners condemned as “irresponsible” the protests against the Qatari envoy.

The companies apologized to al-Emadi, saying the protests were “irresponsible and inappropriate.”

The companies pointed out that the hospital cleaners were angry because they have not received salaries for the past five months.

In a related development, thousands of Palestinians demonstrated in the Gaza Strip on Monday, in protest against the economic and humanitarian crisis in the Hamas-controlled enclave.

The protesters accused the Palestinian Authority government of failing to lift the sanctions it imposed last year on the Gaza Strip.

read more:
Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed
Register for free
and continue reading
Registering also lets you comment on articles and helps us improve your experience. It takes just a few seconds.
Already registered? Enter your email to sign in.
Please use the following structure:
Or Continue with
By registering you agree to the terms and conditions. Once registered, you’ll receive our Daily Edition email for free.
Register to continue
Or Continue with
Log in to continue
Sign in or Register
Or Continue with
check your email
Check your email
We sent an email to you at .
It has a link that will sign you in.