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  • As US President Trump demanded the “halting the financial compensation to terrorists”, just publicized PA documents show the PA admits to paying 517.4 million shekels in salaries to terrorists in 2019, a rise of 15 million shekels compared to 2018.
  • Israeli government stipulated that the PA spent 150 million shekels on the payments to wounded terrorists and the families of dead terrorist “Martyrs” in 2018 
  • PMW has calculated that this figure has grown by at least 1.6 million shekels, in 2019.
  • Accordingly in 2020, the Israeli Government must deduct no less than 669 million shekels from the taxes Israel collects and transfer to the PA

 

Jerusalem: 30 January, 2019:  According to recently published Palestinian Authority financial reports, Palestinian Media Watch can expose that the PA has admitted to spending no less than 517.4 million shekels ($149.7 million/136 million) paying salaries to terrorist prisoners and released prisoners in 2019. 

The PA expenditure on allowances to wounded terrorists and the families of dead terrorists was at least 151.6 million shekels in 2019. Accordingly, the total minimum PA expenditure in 2019 on its payments to terrorists and families of dead terrorists – its Pay-for-Slay policy- was 669 million shekels ($193.6 million/175.8 million). 

Since created in 1994, the PA has implemented a “Pay-for-Slay” policy according to which it pays millions of shekels/dollars/euro every year in monthly financial rewards to imprisoned, released, and wounded terrorists, and to the families of dead terrorists. 

In 2018, Israel passed a law to combat the PA policy. According to the law, at the end of each year, the Israeli Minister of Defense must submit a report to the National Security Cabinet detailing the PA expenditure on terrorist salaries and allowances in the passing year. Once the Cabinet approves the report, the PA expenditure in the previous year is deducted in twelve equal parts from the taxes that Israel collects and transfers to the PA the following year. 

In late December 2019 the Israeli National Security Cabinet decided to deduct an additional sum of 150 million shekels from the tax transfers to the PA, following an additional PMW report on the subject of the PA’s payments to the wounded and the families of the dead terrorists. 

Maurice Hirsch, head of legal strategies at PMW scrutinized the PA’s latest budgetary update. He explained: “PMW’s research proves that in accordance with the Israeli law, Defense Minister Naftali Bennett should present the National Security Cabinet with a report showing that the PA expenditure on its Pay-for-Slay policy was no less than 669 million shekels in 2019. Israeli law demands that this figure be deducted from the monthly tax transfers that Israel makes to the PA.” 

The PA’s “Pay-for-Slay” policy has been widely condemned, with four countries – Canada, the US, Australia, and Holland cutting off all direct aid to the PA until the policy is abolished. Yet, Hirsch said: “The PA continues to request and receive considerable amounts of foreign aid and carries on squandering hundreds of millions of shekels/dollars/euro on terrorist salaries every year, incentivizing and rewarding Palestinian terrorists.”

During the presentation of the new peace plan, US President Donald Trump said:

“To ensure a successful Palestinian state, we are asking the Palestinians to meet the challenges of peaceful co-existence. This includes adopting basic laws enshrining human rights, protecting against financial and political corruption, stopping the malign activities of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other enemies of peace, ending the incitement of hatred against Israel – so important – and permanently halting the financial compensation to terrorists.”   

Hirsch adds: “While most of the world agrees that the PA practice of paying financial rewards to terrorist is despicable, the PA continues to waste ever growing amounts of fungible donor aid to fund this policy. To end the PA’s “Pay-for-Slay” policy, the EU and more countries must make their aid conditional on the permanent abolishment of the policy.”  

-ends-

For more information on PA’s “Pay-for-Slay” policy, contact Maurice Hirsch, head of legal strategies at PMW on cell:  052-946-2844 or email: maurice@palwatch.org  

For general press enquiries, contact Ronit Ansbacher, PMW’s director of press and public affairs on cell: 058-625-4140 or email: ronit@palwatch.org 

PMW, an independent Israeli research institute which Itamar Marcus founded in 1996, studies the totality of Palestinian Authority messages to its people that it disseminates through media, culture, sports, and education.

Some background

The new Israeli law was first implemented in February 2019, after PMW exposed that the PA had admitted to spending no less than 502 million shekels to pay the monthly salaries to the terrorist prisoners and released prisoners in 2018. 

In response to the Israeli decision, Abbas positively decided to plunge the PA into a self-inflicted financial crisis by refusing to accept all the tax revenues from Israel, if Israel deducted any sum. Since the tax revenues account for almost half of the PA budget, rejecting their receipt had a substantial impact on the PA economy. 

To overcome the crisis, the PA decided to temporarily cut salaries to the law abiding PA employees by 50% and to suspend referrals of Palestinians for medical treatment in Israeli hospitals. The PA also attempted to hide its financial reports, until PMW highlighted these actions. However, at the same time, the PA doubled down on its commitment to pay the terrorist prisoners, continuing to pay them 100% of their salaries.  

After 7 months, the PA finally capitulated and agreed to receive the taxes that remained after the deduction. 


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