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Qatari funds give boost to Gaza return marches

A recently delivered cash infusion from Qatar to the Gaza Strip boosted the morale of many Palestinians, and some experts predict the weekly protest marches there will continue — but peacefully, as long as Israel negotiates in good faith.

GAZA CITY, Gaza strip — Qatar’s ambassador to the Palestinian territories, Mohammed al-Emadi, visited Nov. 9 al-Awda refugee camp in the Gaza Strip during Great Return March activities for the first time since the Friday marches began in March.

Emadi had arrived in Gaza a day earlier through the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing, bringing suitcases stuffed with cash — $15 million — as part of a Qatari grant to help alleviate the dire economic situation facing residents. This grant aims to pay the wages of civil servants in the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip, as well as to develop employment projects for college graduates. It is just one of many grants planned. More aid is being provided for energy-related projects. Qatari fuel arrived Nov. 10 to the Gaza Electricity Distribution Company as part of efforts to resolve the power crisis plaguing Gaza.

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