Last year, prior to the January 2005 election for the Palestinian Authority presidency, the workers began preparations for the establishment of an independent workers' organization [in Gaza, reports the Israeli newspaper Haaretz].
They held their founding conference on December 18, 2004, at which an-Najjar was elected chairman and a general secretariat was elected, which includes 21 representatives, including five women. Heads of the organization say that approximately 8,000 workers have registered as members; they pay annual membership dues of ten shekels. . .
The Hamas movement, which recently established a workers' association of its own, offered them to take part in a demonstration it organised. At a meeting held last month at the main office in Khan Yunis, they turned down the offer; they realized their most important asset is organizational independence...
• Read more at the Haaretz website: www.haaretzdaily.com