The Palestinian Authority (PA) announced that it will pay civil servants half of their salaries for February but terrorists and their families have already received the full amount paid to them as a stipend for attacking Israelis.
Ma’an News reported that Shukri Bishara, the Palestinian Minister of Finance, announced that the Palestinian government will be paying only 50 percent of the monthly payroll of the Palestinian civil servants for the month of February 2019. Employees whose salaries are below 2,000 shekels ($550) will receive a full salary however the rest of the civil servants will receive 50 percent of their monthly salary for the same month. He also confirmed that the 50 percent will not be less than a minimum of 2,000 shekels. The Palestinian government decided to freeze all recruitment and promotions of civil servants, as well as the purchase of real estate and vehicles during this time. In addition, leave allowances of civil servants and government officials will also be significantly downsized.
In comparison, more than 4,500 terrorists incarcerated in Israeli jails receive NIS 1,400-12,000. Criminals convicted of non-terrorism related crimes do not receive the stipends. The terrorists’ salaries are paid from the same budget as the civil servants’.
The PA blamed the austerity measures on the decision by the Israeli government to withhold approximately $140 million in tax money due to the PA decision to continue paying stipends to terrorists and their families. Israel collects funds from imports into the West Bank and Gaza, in addition to other taxes, and forwards a large sum of it to the PA, after deduction of payments for water and electricity. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the decision to withhold the money as per Israel’s anti-pay-for-slay law
Bishara said that he plans to borrow $50 million a month from banks during the coming months.