PA condemns Israel's seizure of "Pay-for-Slay" funds from Israeli Arab terrorists, repeats lie that rewards are welfare
The reaction of the Palestinian Authority to the order of Israel’s Minister of Defense Naftali Bennett to seize the monies paid by the PA in salaries to Israeli Arab terrorist prisoners highlighted the false nature of the PA’s claims regarding its “Pay-for-Slay” policy. The decision of Minister Bennett to seize the funds followed the recommendation of Palestinian Media Watch days prior.
Condemning the order of Israel’s Minster of Defense to seize funds paid by the PA to eight Israeli Arab terrorists, Director of the Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr said that the “decision is blatant robbery and open theft” and repeated the claim that the salaries are welfare for the families. He also promised to continue paying the terrorists their monthly salaries:
“The salaries that the commission is paying the prisoners, independent of their place of residence, are allowances that provide their families with a living, a place to live, health, education, and so on, and we will not relinquish this obligation regardless of the extremist Israeli ways of thwarting them [the allowances], seizing them, or stealing them like highway robbers.”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 26, 2019]
The PA wants Israel to stand idly by and permit the PA to pay financial rewards to Israeli Arab terrorist prisoners who murdered other Israelis or otherwise participated in terrorism against Israel, and all under the pretext that the payments “provide their families with a living, a place to live, health, education, and so on.”
Needless to say, the PA’s claim is manifestly false as the payments of monthly salaries to the Israeli Arab terrorist prisoners fulfil none of the argued goals.
Firstly, the salaries are paid simply because the terrorists are in prison for what the PA Law of Prisoners and Released Prisoners euphemistically refers to as “struggling against the occupation.” This definition includes the entire spectrum of Palestinian terrorists, including those charged and convicted with mere membership in terrorist organizations to those convicted of mass murders. A wealthy terrorist receives the same payment as a destitute terrorist. There are no needs-based requirements such as the family of the terrorist being homeless or not being able to make ends meet. Moreover, unmarried terrorists with no families to support receive the same base salary as do married terrorists, only these receive an insignificant supplement per spouse and child.
Secondly, because the terrorists are Israeli Arabs, their children (if they have any) are covered by the Israeli health system and can attend Israeli schools.
Thirdly, when proven necessary and if they meet the income standards set by Israeli law, the families of Israeli Arab terrorists are even entitled to Israeli social welfare payments.
In truth, as PMW has already demonstrated, despite the claims of the PA, the “Pay-for-Slay” payments have nothing whatsoever to do with welfare.
The following are longer excerpts of the statements cited above:
Headline: “A new theft: The occupation has seized the money of eight prisoners from the 1948 territories”
“Israeli Army Minister (sic., Minister of Defense) Naftali Bennett yesterday, Wednesday [Dec. 25, 2019], signed an order seizing the money of the families of eight prisoners from the 1948 territories (i.e., Israel), claiming that they are monthly salaries (rawatib) they received from the PA.
Bennett took pride in his decision to steal the prisoners’ money, and claimed that ‘This is the first step that Israel is carrying out directly’ against the prisoners who receive monthly salaries from the PA, claiming that the salaries ‘encourage’ carrying out operations (i.e., terror attacks). He also threatened to seize the money of additional prisoners in the future.
The prisoners who were included in the money seizure order: Muwaffaq Naif Hassan Uruq (i.e., terrorist, led two suicide bombers who murdered 23), Ibrahim Muhammad Ibrahim Al-Bakri, Yassin Hassan Saleh Al-Bakri (i.e., terrorist brothers, aided suicide bomber who murdered 9), Hikmat Fahim Mustafa Na’amneh (i.e., involved in funding illegal organizations assaulting and intimidating Jews on the Temple Mount), Muhammad Sa’id Tawfiq Jabarin (i.e., terrorist involved in the Night of the Pitchforks, 3 murdered), Walid Daqqa (i.e., terrorist, involved in murder of 1), Samir Saleh Taha Sarsawi (i.e., terrorist, threw a hand grenade), and Mujahid Muhammad Yusuf Dhouqan (i.e., attempted to bomb an Israeli rail line near Netanya in cooperation with Fatah terrorists).
In response to the decision, Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr said that the decision is blatant robbery and open theft of the rights of the prisoners’ families.
He added that the salaries that the commission is paying the prisoners, independent of their place of residence, are allowances that provide their families with a living, a place to live, health, education, and so on, and we will not relinquish this obligation regardless of the extremist Israeli ways of thwarting them [the allowances], seizing them, or stealing them like highway robbers.”
[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 26, 2019]
Muwaffaq Naif Hassan Uruq – Arab-Israeli terrorist who led two suicide bombers to their double attack in Tel Aviv in which 23 people were murdered and dozens injured on Jan. 5, 2003. Uruq is serving a 30-year sentence.
Ibrahim Al-Bakri – Israeli Arab terrorist who, together with his brother Yassin, assisted the terrorist who committed the suicide attack on bus no. 361 at the Meron Junction in northern Israel on Aug. 4, 2002, in which 9 were murdered and approximately 50 wounded. Al-Bakri is serving 9 life sentences and an additional 30 years.
The Night of the Pitchforks - Four Islamic Jihad terrorists entered an army training camp and used knives, axes, and a pitchfork to murder three sleeping soldiers Guy Friedman, Yaakov Dubinsky, and Yuri Ferda on Feb. 14, 1992. The Israeli Arab terrorists Ibrahim Agbaria, Yahia Agbaria, Muhammad Agbaria, and Muhammad Jabarin are each serving 3 life sentences. The attack, near Kibbutz Gilad in northern Israel, is known as “the night of the pitchforks.”
Walid Daqqa - Israeli Arab member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). He is serving a life sentence for being part of the squad that kidnapped and murdered Israeli soldier Moshe Tamam in 1984.
Samir Sarsawi – Israeli Arab terrorist and Fatah member who threw a hand grenade on Nordau St. in Haifa in 1988. Sarsawi was sentenced to life for the grenade throwing and his involvement in other terror attacks, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence to 30 years in 2012, and Sarsawi was released in November 2018.