Palestinian Authority unable to pay May salaries after refusing to receive Israeli tax funds
The Palestinian Authority announced that government employees would not be paid salaries for May after the Arab authority refused to accept tax funds collected for it by Israel, in response to the Jewish State’s plans to apply sovereignty over Jewish communities of Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley.
A proposed NIS 800 million loan by Israel to the PA, which could have helped to avoid the budgetary deficit, it’s also off the table, PA PM Mohammed Shtayyeh said.
“We paid salaries for March and April, we offered assistance to many poor families and we offered loans with interest rates of three percent, but we will not barter money with politics,” Shtayyeh stated.
“Our employees are ready to bear the consequences of Israel’s withholding of our money. Previously, we remained for six months without salaries,” he said.
In July 2018, Israel approved a law to withhold tax revenue from the PA equal to the amount the PLO terror group pays to Muslim terrorists in Israeli prisons and their families, as well as the families of terrorists eliminated during terror attacks.
In February 2019, Israel withheld $138 million from the tax revenue, which led the PA to pay 50% of February and March salaries, and in April, 60%.
Yesterday, the PA rejected to receive a delivery of medical supplies that arrived in Tel Aviv on a flight from Abu Dhabi. It was the second time that the PA refused to accept such assistance from the United Arab Emirates.
Last month, PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas announced the suspension of all agreements and security cooperation with Israel in response to the sovereignty plan.
According to President Trump’s Mideast peace plan unveiled in January, the US will recognize an Israeli application of sovereignty over parts of the Jordan Valley, Judea and Samaria following the completion of a survey conducted by a joint US-Israel mapping committee, and if Israel agrees to negotiate under the framework of the proposal.