Israel approves cut to PA tax transfer

Image of demonstration in support of the Palestinian prisoners, outside the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Gaza City, Gaza on May 22, 2017 [Mustafa Hassona/Anadolu Agency]

Image of demonstration in support of the Palestinian prisoners, outside the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Gaza City, Gaza on May 22, 2017

Israel’s parliament moved forward today with a bill that would see the government cease to transfer an estimated 1 billion shekels ($280 million) per year to the Palestinian Authority (PA) over the controversial “martyrs” compensation programme that provides financial allowances to Palestinians imprisoned by Israel and their families.

Israeli media reported that the Knesset plenum approved a preliminary reading of the bill, with some 48 Knesset members voting in favour of the bill and 13 opposing it.

Read: Israel attempts to block yet another UN report

During the reading, Israel’s Deputy Defence Minister, Eli Ben Dahan, said: “It cannot be that with one hand, they [Palestinians] seek to make peace with Israel, while they continue to fund terrorists with the other,” according to the Times of Israel.

MK Yousif Jabarin of the Joint List condemned the bill as draconian, saying “it is collective punishment against the entire Palestinian population. There are nearly no families that don’t have a relative that is a political security prisoner.”

Almost every other household among the Palestinian people is the family of a prisoner or martyr

Issa Qaraqe, head of the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, told Haaretz.

(Source / 15.06.2017)

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