PA Prime Minister lies to American Envoy that the PA's financial problems are a result of "unjust Israeli theft of our money"
Headline: “Shtayyeh: An improvement in living conditions is not an alternative to a political prospect”
“[PA] Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh met yesterday [March 14, 2022] with American Envoy Hady Amr at his office in Ramallah. He discussed with him about the need to achieve progress in order to break the current political standstill and to stop the Israeli measures against our people.
The prime minister said: ‘There is a general feeling of rage in Palestine due to the ongoing Israeli attacks, the invasions and terror of the settlers, and also due to the double standards in implementing international law and in the international community’s activity.’ He emphasized that there needs to be a political will to support the Palestinian side and implement the commitments, especially on everything concerning reopening the American consulate in Jerusalem, and this is in order to preserve the two-state solution. He also said that there is a need for political dialogue between the American side and the Palestinian side.
The prime minister called to push towards a political path and emphasized: ‘Improving living conditions is important, but it is not an alternative to the existence of a political prospect.’
He demanded that the American administration press Israel to honor the agreements that were signed in order to advance the political topic, so that it will be the beginning of discourse on many topics, including holding the national [PA] elections in all the districts, including Jerusalem.
The prime minister also demanded to press Israel to stop its measures against our people, to stop the settlers’ terror, and to stop the invasions of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Ibrahimi Mosque (i.e., the Cave of the Patriarchs).
The prime minister briefed the American envoy on the economic and financial challenges that the Palestinian people and the PA are dealing with due to external influences, the illegal Israeli deductions of the Palestinian tax money (refers to Israel’s Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct PA terror salaries; see note below -Ed.), and the decline in international aid.
Shtayyeh explained: ‘Financial reports of the [International] Monetary Fund and the World Bank clearly indicate that all the financial reforms that we are carrying out will not resolve our crisis as long as Israel is continuing with the deductions from our money and as long as the decline in international aid continues.’ …
During his meeting with a delegation of 300 students from the American Harvard University yesterday, the prime minister said: ‘There are many challenges that we are dealing with. The greatest challenge is national unity and ending the [Fatah-Hamas] rift, and we will work to that end through all paths… The second challenge is the Judaization of Jerusalem, the capital of our state, and the ongoing Israeli policy of systematically destroying the two-state solution.’
He added: ‘Another challenge that we are dealing with is the ongoing unjust Israeli theft of our money, which is causing us to have a cumulative monthly financial deficit that impacts upholding our commitments to our people, and this is because we are taking care of the families of the Martyrs who were shot by the occupation and ascended [to Heaven].’
Shtayyeh continued: ‘The conflict is a political conflict and not a religious one. Every political solution, discussions, or negotiations need clear and agreed upon sources of authority such as international law and the UN resolutions, a fair mediator in the peace process, confidence building measures between the two sides, sincere intentions, and an agreed upon timeline. Israel has destroyed all these things.’”
The PA and its leaders misrepresent all of the Temple Mount as an integral part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Therefore, they vilify any presence of Jews on the mount as an "invasion." It should be noted that Jews who visit the Temple Mount only enter some sections of the open areas, and do not enter the Al-Aqsa Mosque or the Dome of the Rock. Israeli police ban Jewish prayer at the Temple Mount because of threats of violence by Palestinians.
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.