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Gaza citizens remain biggest losers of decadelong political dispute

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a decree exempting Gazans from fees for services that the Palestinian Authority provides, and that the Hamas-run treasury collects.
Hamas supporters hold crossed posters depicting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah during a protest against them in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip April 14, 2017. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa - RTX35K1R
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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — In a new move to clamp down on Hamas in the Gaza Strip, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential decree April 20 exempting Gaza citizens from the fees of services rendered by the ministries, institutions and bodies affiliated with the Palestinian Authority (PA). The decision includes first-time service fees, which go to the treasury of the Hamas-run Ministry of Finance in Gaza.

The decree covers nine articles, exempting income tax on companies and individuals, imports of goods from abroad, purchases and sales under the clearing bills, professional licenses for companies licensed in the southern governorates (the Gaza Strip) and working in the northern governorates (the West Bank) — all of which go to the treasury in Ramallah.

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