Israel to Cut Off Palestinian Authority Payments to Imprisoned Terrorists

The Israeli Diplomatic-Security Cabinet decided Thursday to actively counter Palestinian Authority policies through which terrorists imprisoned in Israel are eligible for monthly wages. In 2012, Ramallah’s payments to terrorists exceeded $19 million.

The ministers have instructed Israeli intelligence agencies to gather information about the nature of such transactions, so that Israel may prevent the funds from reaching their destination, either by intercepting wire transfers or by seizing the funds from the terrorists and their families.

Palestinian Authority payments are usually done by wire transfer to either the terrorist’s bank account or that of a family member. In some cases, funds are physically delivered to terrorists’ homes, and Israel has knowledge of instances when funds were even delivered to terrorists imprisoned in Israel.

The Ramallah-based government, it appears, determines terrorists’ wages according to the length of their prison sentence, and the longer the sentence, the higher the wages.

According to Palestinian law, a terrorist serving three years or under in Israeli prisons is eligible for a monthly payment of about $370, a terrorists serving up to 15 years is paid $1,600 a month, and those sentenced to life in prison are paid $3,100.

“This is an absurd situation that has been going on for years as part of the incitement apparatus Israel constantly warns the international community against,” Immigrant Absorption Minister Zeev Elkin said Thursday. “I’m glad that we’re finally putting a stop to it.”