GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- The Palestinian phone company Jawwal on Sunday reopened its offices and showrooms across the Gaza Strip less than a week after they were closed by Hamas over accusations of tax dodging.
Official sources told Ma’an that Ismail Jabir, the attorney-general for the coastal enclave's de facto leader Hamas, had given orders that Jawwal reopen.
They said that the decision came after an agreement was reached between Hamas and Jawwal, although no further details were given.
Hamas security forces shut down Jawwal's offices and showrooms last Tuesday on orders from Jabir for allegedly dodging taxes.
An executive from Jawwal, one of the principle telecoms providers in the occupied Palestinian territories, insisted that "the company is not avoiding any of its (payment) commitments."
However, business analyst Omar Shaaban said it was likely Jawwal was paying taxes to the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority and not the Hamas authorities in Gaza.
Ammar al-Iker, executive director of the Palestinian Telecommunication Company, which owns Jawwal, said that the company followed lawful procedures instituted by the PA for companies in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, including tax obligations.
The closure could have resulted in the cessation of all mobile phone services in Gaza, with few alternatives to the services provided by Jawwal.
The PA slammed the closure as "aggravating division" and "a flagrant violation of Palestinian law."