PA deplores tax cuts from terrorists' salaries
Headline: "Al-Malki demands that the [UN] Human Rights Council take practical steps in order to protect the two-state solution"
"[PA] Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Riyad Al-Malki demanded that the [UN] Human Rights Council take practical steps in order to protect the two-state solution, to guarantee justice for the Palestinian people, and to realize the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights – self-determination, independence in the State of Palestine whose capital is Jerusalem, and the refugees' right to return to their lands from which they were uprooted - on the basis of [UN] Resolution 194 (see note below –Ed.).
He said this in a speech he gave yesterday [Feb. 26, 2019] before the Human Rights Council in Geneva…
Al-Malki noted: 'Israel, the occupying power, is increasing its provocations and continuing the incitement and illegal steps against both the Palestinian people and its leadership. The Israeli government has acted blatantly to steal over $138 million – revenues from the Palestinian tax money that Israel collects on our behalf according the economic Paris Agreement (referring to implementation of the Anti "Pay-for-Slay” Law; see notes below –Ed.).' He emphasized: ‘This act is meant to directly destroy the Palestinian leadership, to harm the PA institutions’ ability to continue functioning – and particularly those that are acting in the fields of health care, social security, education, and security – and to harm the Palestinian families, as the theft of the tax revenues targets the most important groups in our society – the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the political prisoners, who were arbitrarily arrested. This is a collective punishment of this group, and this is meant to destroy the social security net that is provided to them.’"
UN Resolution 194 (Chapter 11, Dec. 11, 1948) states that "the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return." Palestinian leaders argue this means that all Arabs who left Israel during the war (hundreds of thousands) and their descendants (a few million) have a "right of return" to Israel. Israel argues that the resolution only calls for a limited return and only under certain conditions, especially focusing on the words "wishing to return... and live at peace with their neighbors."
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]
Paris Agreement – agreement on economic relations between Israel and the PLO, signed in Paris on April 29, 1994. Its main goal is to promote peace by establishing economic relations modeled on EU economic relations.