Gaza Post-GAZA// Jordan and Egypt are reportedly attempting to broker between Palestine and Israeli authorities over the Palestinian Authority’s refusal to accept tax dividends collected by Israel.
The two countries have stepped in because the United States cannot help resolve the spiraling financial crisis due to the PA’s ongoing boycott of the Trump administration over Washington’s aid cuts and the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the Haaretz daily reported on Tuesday.
A senior PA official told the newspaper that Jordan and Egypt, as well as Israel, have a clear interest in maintaining stability in the region, but that PA President Mahmoud Abbas would not compromise on the issue.
“For years we have been talking to Israel and the international community about the fact that the existence of the Palestinian Authority is an important element of stability in the West Bank,” the official said.
“In a state of collapse there will be no vacuum and in Israel they know very well who will rule the area. So Israel needs to make a calculation or the White House may find itself without a PA when they present the so-called ‘deal of the century,'” the official said, referring to US President Donald Trump’s upcoming proposal for a peace plan. “And Jordan and Lebanon will need to explain what they intend to do with the Palestinians in their territory.”
Israel announced in February that it would withhold $138 million in monthly payments to the PA — to offset the PA’s payments to Palestinians jailed by Israel for terrorism and violence, and to the families of dead terrorists.
The Palestinians have protested the law, refusing to receive any of the taxes Israel gathers for them on a monthly basis, as long as the Jewish state does not transfer them their full amount.
The taxes Israel collects and transfers to the PA make up hundreds of millions of shekels, more than half of its monthly budget.
According to the Kan public broadcaster, Israel recently tried to transfer $182 million to the PA, but the transaction was rejected.
On Monday, Abbas said the Palestinians were not optimistic that Arab states would provide them a financial safety net to overcome a steep financial crisis.
“Of course, we have asked the [Arab] brothers for a safety net,” he said. “If God wills. I mean we do not have high hopes, but if God wills, something will happen. We asked for $100 million per month. We told them we will take it as debt…I mean you give us and then we will return the money to you… Even on the debt offer, we have not received a response. But we have to bear responsibility and be patient.”
Source: Isareli Media