On Wednesday morning hundreds of people gathered in Ramallah in the central square of Al Manara to protest against
the increase in taxes that the government of Prime Minister Salam Fayyad introduced with the new year. The new financial measures introduced a progressive increase of taxation on wages of Palestinian citizens aiming at achieving a more balanced relationship between taxpayers and the government.
The demonstration was organised by a Facebook group called "Against the High Cost of Living and Tax Increases."
Protesters held banners reading "Yes to a national economy that protects the citizen’s dignity”, “People want to overthrow the new tax law”, and “18 shekels for one kilo of chicken, and 80 for meat, that’s if officials don’t know.”
The protest followed the one on last Saturday in the city of Nablus where citizens took the streets brandishing pots and pans to
symbolise the exponential cost of food products in the West Bank.
The progressive taxation that Fayyad's government has introduced raises the income tax from a minimum of 5% to a maximum 30% for the wealthiest citizens and is intended as a tool for tackling the huge deficits created by the Palestinian Authority in the last few years. In a recent statement Fayyad also said that new taxes will be introduced on real estates and financial transactions related to trade.