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Head of prisoners’ commission blesses prisoners; 450 prisoners’ salaries have been stopped for technical reasons

Headline: “Qadri Abu Bakr to Wattan: The prisoners are ‘a red line,’ and thanks to their unity they will be saved from the occupation”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr blessed the prisoners, the released [prisoners], their relatives, and all of the Palestinian people for Eid Al-Fitr (i.e., Muslim holiday marking the end of Ramadan)…

Regarding the prisoners’ salaries, he emphasized that the prisoners and released [prisoners] have been receiving salaries for more than 50 years. He added that in recent months the occupation has legislated a number of laws in the Israeli Parliament, among them the law to deduct the prisoners’ and Martyrs’ salaries (i.e., the Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law; see note below), but [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] has emphasized that the prisoners’ salaries are a red line…

He explained: ‘The number of prisoners whose salary payments have been stopped is 450, and the reason for this is not political, but rather that for three years we have been demanding that they update their data, but they have not done so.’”

Israel's Anti "Pay-for-Slay" Law - Israeli law stating that the PA payments to terrorists and the families of dead terrorists is a financial incentive to terror. The law instructs the state to deduct and freeze the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA. Should the PA stop these payments for a full year, the Israeli government would have the option of giving all or part of the frozen money to the PA. The law was enacted by the Israeli Parliament on July 2, 2018, and its first implementation was approved by Israel's Security Cabinet on Feb. 17, 2019, when it decided to withhold 502,697,000 Israeli shekels (approximately $138 million) from the PA. In response, the PA announced it would not accept any of the tax money collected by Israel unless it also included the frozen amount. During the initial parliamentary vote in 2018, the law's sponsor Avi Dichter said: “The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee received much help in its deliberations... from Palestinian Media Watch who provided us with authentic data that enabled productive and professional deliberations, nuances that are very difficult to achieve without precise data.” [Israeli Parliament website, July 2, 2018]