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PLO official: Arab nations should cease all “normalizations” with Israel; "Heroic" prisoners' salaries will still be paid

Headline: “The Arab parliaments unanimously agree that it is necessary to stop the rapprochement with Israel and adhere to the Arab Peace Initiative and the centrality of the Palestinian cause”

“The participants in the 29th conference of the Arab Inter-Parliamentary Union, which Jordan is hosting, demandedto support the Palestinians by stopping all forms of rapprochement and normalization with the Israeli occupier…

In his speech, Palestinian National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO) Chairman Salim Al-Za’anoun demanded that the union adhere to the decisions of the Arab Summit conferences and the Arab Peace Initiative, which ban any form of Arab normalization with the Israeli occupation state at any level before its complete withdrawal from the Palestinian and Arab territories that have been occupied since 1967,and before the resolution of the problem of the Palestinian refugees in accordance with [UN] Resolution 194 (see note below –Ed.)…

He added that Israel is attempting to harm the sanctity of the Palestinian struggle and is stealing the Palestinian tax money (refers to Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terrorist salaries; see note below –Ed.) on the pretext that some of it goes to taking care of the families of the heroic Martyrs (Shahids), the wounded, and the prisoners. Al-Za’anoun emphasized that they will continue to take care of these heroes as a national duty and legal obligation that applies to all of us, because they are the symbol of self-sacrifice.”

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. During the parliamentary vote, 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] In accordance with the law, as of September 2021 Israel’s Security Cabinet had ordered the freeze of 1.857 billion shekels ($580.15 million) - the sum equivalent to the PA payments to terrorists in 2018, 2019, and 2020.