By Ariel Kahana , Lilach Shoval and Reuters, Israel Hayom—
Israel will withhold $180 million in tax revenue it collected in 2020 on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, or about 7% of the PA’s total tax revenue, to offset stipends paid to terrorists and their families, the government said on Sunday. The decision – which would be carried out in monthly deductions – was taken after Defense Minister Benny Gantz presented the minister with a report on the scope of funding provided by the PA to terrorists and their families.
The measure is based on a 2018 law under which Israel can deduct tax revenues it collects on behalf of the PA after reviewing the amount it funnels to terrorists in Israeli jails and those who have been released, as well as to their families.
Since 2020, Israel has begun implementing this law, in part because the Palestinian Authority refused to accept the funds with strings attached to them. But despite various assessments that this would lead to a budgetary crisis in the PA, this has yet to materialize.
Israel calls stipends for terrorists and their families a “pay for slay” policy that encourages violence.
Qadri Abu Baker, head of prisoners affairs in the Palestine Liberation Organization, called the Israeli measure a crime of “terror and piracy.”