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Prisoners received small salaries and were exempt from certain payments under Yasser Arafat

Headline: “Prisoners’ families: ‘President Arafat’s decisions played a role in supporting the prisoner movement’”
“Regarding memories about President Arafat’s unique positions regarding the prisoners’ cause, citizen [and] mother of Ibrahim Baroud, a member of the Prisoners’ Families Committee, said that she cannot forget his [Arafat’s] words, his decisions, and his directives in support of the prisoners’ rights. She stressed that at one of the meetings attended by a number of families, she asked about the veteran prisoners, and his answer was: ‘This has been left up to Israel’s good intentions.’ Later a question [was asked] about the prisoners’ salaries that at the time were [only] 300-500 shekels, even though the prisoners had a lot of expenses, and he said at the time: ‘Make a note, Kanafani’, meaning Marwan Kanafani (Arafat’s spokesman). Later one of the families asked to be exempted from having to pay electricity and water bills, and he answered: ‘Make a note, Kanafani.’ When the subject of canteen [expenses] that were paid for PLO prisoners only, was brought up, he answered: ‘Make a note, Kanafani: Payment without discrimination,’ and this has remained [the policy] until this very minute.’”