“Exclusive” research was carried by an Israeli NGO as a new Israeli law imposes sanctions on such payments.
By David Jablinowitz, United with Israel
The Palestinian Authority (PA) spent at least NIS 502 million ($137 million) in payments to terrorist prisoners in 2018, according to a report issued by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), an Israel-based NGO.
PMW said that it carried out the research as Israel was preparing to implement a new law that imposes financial sanctions on the PA for its so-called “Pay for Slay” policy. The media monitor group said that it looked at the PA’s financial reports for 2018 which include its payments to the terrorists, both current and released prisoners.
PMW says that while the PA authorities do not provide details of how this money was allocated between the terrorists still in Israeli jails and those already released, the watch group made calculations based solely on what it says are “open sources,” including from the Israel Prisons Service.
The group says that the figures show that least NIS 230 million were paid in salaries to current terrorist prisoners and at least 176 million to already released terrorist prisoners. It says that it could not pinpoint the breakdown between present and past prisoners for the remaining 96 million in salaries and any other benefits paid by the PA.
PMW says it has provided Israel’s Defense Ministry with its figures. The new law was passed in the Knesset in July and is to be implemented for the first time this month.
Under the terms of the law, the defense minister must compile an annual report of the PA’s payments to current and released terrorist prisoners, as well as to the families of Palestinians killed as “martyrs,” and those wounded.
Once the defense minister’s findings are approved by the security cabinet, the Israeli Government would deduct that amount from the taxes and tariffs which Israel collects and normally transfers to the PA.
“The law that imposes monetary sanctions on the PA because of its payments to terrorists is one of the most important laws passed in Israel in recent years because it sends a clear message to the Palestinian Authority that Israel will by no means accept its support for terrorism,” said PMW director Itamar Marcus.
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