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PA salaries to terrorists and their families
PA salaries to terrorists and their families
In April 2011, the Palestinian Authority Registry published a Government Resolution granting all Palestinian prisoners imprisoned in Israel for security and terror-related offenses a monthly salary from the PA (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 15, 2011). This new resolution, called PA Government Resolution of 2010, numbers 21 and 23, formalized what has long been a PA practice.

The PA defined which Palestinians would be considered "prisoners": "Anyone imprisoned in the occupation's [Israel's] prisons as a result of his participation in the struggle against the occupation" (Ch. 1 of Law of Prisoners, 2004/19, www.alasra.ps, accessed May 9, 2011)

According to the PA definition, more than 4,500 Palestinian prisoners (as of December 2012) serving time for terror-related offenses are recipients of PA salaries. This means that Palestinians convicted of crimes such as theft do not receive a salary, but Hamas and Fatah terrorist murderers do.

These monthly payments to prisoners are paid from the PA’s general budget and income taxes are paid, as is the case with all other PA salaries (Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011). According to the language of the PA regulation as well as PA economic reports on government salaries, the monthly salaries to prisoners range from 1,400 shekels to 12,000 shekels. The PA economic report listed the prisoners’ salaries as part of the PA general salary budget, which includes civil servants, military personnel and others. (Life and the Market, supplement to Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011). It was not listed as a social service payment.

The PA’s general budget and salary budget is funded by numerous donor countries. Since 2011, PMW has been documenting that international donors' aid money given for salaries and to the PA general budget pays the salaries of Palestinian terrorists imprisoned in Israel. This is in violation of the letter or spirit of the laws of the funding countries.

Responding to queries from donor countries following PMW reports, the PA told the donor countries that they changed the wording of the law from “salaries” – “ratib”- to “assistance” – “i’ana.” British Minister of State stated in a letter that “we have discussed these issues with the PA at the highest levels” and “the PA has now changed the wording in the Cabinet Decision to unambiguously refer to the payment as assistance – i’ana.’” (Letter from Minister of State Alan Duncan to MP Mike Freer, see report here) However, the PA immediately contradicted what Duncan had claimed, calling it a rumor:

“[Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa] Karake denies rumors about changing salaries (Arabic: rawatib) into social assistance (Arabic: i'anat ijtima'iya)…” [WAFA (the official Palestinian Authority news agency), Dec. 27, 2012]
 
This was likewise corroborated by Prisoners' Club Chairman Qadura Fares, when he announced that the PA had finalized a final version of the law “which considers payments made to prisoners 'salaries,' (Arabic: ratib) to which no other term applies.” [Al-Quds Internet edition, Dec. 27, 2012]

In August 2014, the PA implemented another ruse to evade pressure from international ‎donors. The PA closed the PA Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs and announced the ‎establishment of a new PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, which they claimed ‎would pay the salaries. ‎

However, the PLO Commission was new only in name. The PLO body would have the ‎same responsibilities and pay the exact same amounts of salaries to prisoners; the ‎former PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Issa Karake, became the Director of the new ‎PLO Commission and PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas retained overall supervision of ‎the PLO Commission. [PNN Palestine News Network (independent Palestinian news agency), Aug. 29, 2014] [Ayjal radio (independent Palestinian station), Aug. 30, 2014] [Official PA TV, May 9, 2015]

Nevertheless, many international donors accepted PA assurances that the PA was no ‎longer paying the salaries to terrorist prisoners. For instance, the Dutch government ‎made this statement in April 2015: ‎

‎“The responsibility for payments to prisoners was transferred to the PLO and will ‎no longer be charged to the budget of the PA, and these [payments to prisoners] ‎are not funded by PA tax revenues or donor funds. The PLO pays such costs ‎from their own income, where the Cabinet has no access.” [Question and ‎Answer session, Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, April 22, 2015] ‎
 
Ample evidence contradicts the PA assurances to the Dutch and other donors. These ‎findings are based entirely on information supplied by the PA: ‎

‎- In January 2015, the PA Ministry of Finance announced that the PA budget includes ‎transfer of salaries to prisoners in Israeli jails who were from Gaza. [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, ‎Jan. 6, 2015] This openly contradicts the PA claim that the PA no longer pays salaries ‎to prisoners.‎

‎- When Israel withheld PA tax income in the first months of 2015, the PA announced ‎that prisoners receiving up to 2,000 shekels in salary a month would continue to ‎receive their full salary and those receiving more than 2,000 shekels would only ‎receive 60% of their salary -- the same reduction that was imposed on civil servants. ‎‎[Wattan News Agency, March 5, 2015] Were the PLO paying salaries from Arab donor ‎money and not the PA, Israel's holding up PA money would have no impact on terrorist ‎prisoners’ salaries. Clearly, it is still PA money paying terrorist prisoners’ salaries.‎

To view all PMW reports on PA salaries to terrorist prisoners, click here.

The following section documents all developments related to salaries for ‎Palestinian prisoners imprisoned in Israel:‎

PA Prime Minister complains to Word Bank about Israel withholding PA tax revenues over salaries to terrorists: "Israel wants to destroy and exhaust the Palestinian economy, through the deduction of the tax money”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, May 9, 2019
Published on the English edition of WAFA, the official PA news agency 

Headline: “Premier calls on World Bank to have a say in Israel's withholding of Palestinian tax revenue”
“Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh called today upon the World Bank to have a greater role in monitoring Israel's deductions from the tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian government...
"Israel wants to destroy and exhaust the Palestinian economy, through the deduction of the tax money... (the original Arabic version also included the following words: "... manipulations of and stealing from the amounts of money going to the PA" -Ed.) and by trying to pull the banking institutions operating in Palestine into a legal war leading to their liquidation and closure," Shtayyeh told the World Bank country director.”
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PA Prime Minister: We can’t accept tax deductions, prisoners are fighters, not terrorists who “sacrificed their blood for Palestine”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 30, 2019
Official PA TV program Topic of the Day

PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh: "We unequivocally want all of our money in full. We will not agree to be subjected to extortion, because if we agree to deductions (referring to the Israeli Anti "Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terror salaries), it will have ominous political consequences, and it will have legal implications for us as an authority, and on the banking sector, and on the beneficiaries and such. Therefore, we are unable to denounce our prisoners in any way. Our prisoners are in the prisons for the homeland's freedom. Our prisoners are in the prisons because they are cases of fighting, and not cases of terror as Israel claims. In general, we – as [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] has said more than once: 'If we are down to the last penny, it will be designated for the prisoners and the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), who have sacrificed their blood for Palestine.'"
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Additional benefits for the families of terrorist prisoners - PA-funded Prisoners` Club and PLO Prisoners` Commission arrange free medical exams for relatives of terrorist prisoners
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 23, 2019
Headline: "Ramallah: Signing an agreement exempting the prisoners' families from medical exam fees"
       "The [PA-funded] Prisoners' Club and the Palestinian Doctors' Association signed a cooperation agreement yesterday [April 22, 2019] that exempts first-degree relatives of the prisoners (wife, children, and parents) [parentheses in source] from paying for medical exams by the official doctors who are registered at the association and committed to this agreement.
The agreement, signed by Chairman of the Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares and Chairman of the Doctors’ Association Dr. Shawqi Sabha, includes the prisoners of the West Bank, including Jerusalem, and Palestine that is occupied since 1948 (i.e., Israel), and the Prisoners' Club will take upon itself the mission of issuing special certificates to the prisoners' families so they can show them during a doctor's visit."

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Abbas: Terrorists acted out of “national interest, not for personal reasons” – we must pay them
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 21, 2019


Speech at the Arab League conference in Cairo

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "[Israel] said: 'We object to the money that you are paying to' – what they call – 'the terrorists, the criminals.' In other words, the Martyrs, the prisoners, and the wounded. Why? They [Israel] said: 'They are criminals. Therefore, you must not pay them money.' We have been paying salaries to the families of the Martyrs, to the prisoners, and to the wounded since 1965. This is because they were killed, imprisoned, or wounded because of a national interest and for the sake of a national interest, and not for personal reasons. It is our obligation to take care of their families."
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Abbas confirms continued salaries to terrorist prisoners
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Mar. 31, 2019

Speech at the Arab League Summit in Tunisia

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "[Israel] has recently begun to deduct a large part of our money that it collects… which is known as the tax deduction money that amounts to $200 million a month, on the pretext that we are paying salaries to the families of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded… We have said and will say to Israel and the entire world that we will not abandon our people, and particularly [not] those among them who have sacrificed. We will continue to support them even if these will be the last financial resources that we have."
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PA stops referring Palestinian patients to Israeli hospitals, following implantation of Israel’s anti “pay-for-slay” law
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 27, 2019
     “[PA] Ministry of Health Spokesman Osama Al-Najjar announced the cessation of medical referrals to the Israeli hospitals, starting from yesterday [March 26, 2019].  Al-Najjar explained that this decision was made in response to the deduction of sums from the taxes that [Israel] collects each month for the Palestinian coffers (refers to Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terrorist salaries; see note below –Ed.). He added that the cost of the referrals to the Israeli hospitals is $100 million a year, and emphasized that the Ministry of Health will be committed to find alternatives for the sick in the state hospitals and in private hospitals. He also said that they are discussing additional alternatives, in case there will be a need for them. Al-Najjar calmed our people that this decision will not affect the health services that they receive, and that the ministry is committed to provide the necessary treatment to all who need it. Al-Najjar said: ‘The decision is political par excellence, and comes in response to Israel deducting sums from the money that it collects for us.’”
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Fatah official: “We are prepared to sacrifice our salaries, and we will not touch a single penny of the salaries of our Martyrs and our wounded and prisoner heroes”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 11, 2019
Headline: “Abu Rudeina: We are prepared to sacrifice our salaries, and we will not touch a single penny of the salaries of our Martyrs and of our wounded and prisoner heroes”
     “Fatah Movement Commissioner of Information, Culture, and Ideology and [Fatah] Central Committee member Nabil Abu Rudeina said that our Palestinian people and its leadership will not agree to compromise on the national principles, and prime among them Jerusalem and its holy sites. He added that the salaries of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners are a taboo that must not be touched…
Abu Rudeina added: ‘We are prepared to sacrifice our salaries, and we will not touch a single penny of the salaries of our Martyrs and our wounded and prisoner heroes, who have sacrificed that which is most precious to them for their homeland’s cause and for the realization of their people’s hope and aspirations for freedom and independence.’”
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PA Finance Minister: Salaries of PA employees will be paid at a rate of 50%, no less than 2,000 shekels
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Mar. 10, 2019
Headline: “[PA] minister of finance at a press conference: The salaries will be paid today at a rate of 50% and will be no less than 2,000 shekels”
      “[PA] Minister of Finance and Planning Shukri Bishara said that the salaries of the public employees for the month of February will be paid today, Sunday [March 10, 2019], at a rate of 50%, and no less than 2,000 shekels. Bishara explained at a joint press conference, which was held on Sunday with [PA] Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Information Nabil Abu Rudeina and [PA] Government Spokesman and Deputy Minister of Information Yusuf Al-Mahmoud, that 40% of the clerks will receive a full salary – those whose salary is less than 2,000 shekels [a month]. He also announced a freeze in appointments, raises, and the purchase of assets, the rationing of travel refunds, and other decisions in order to deal with the financial crisis.”

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PA Minister of Finance announces terrorist prisoners and “Martyrs” have been paid in full, public employees take pay cuts
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Mar. 10, 2019

PA Minister of Finance and Planning Shukri Bishara:
"The salaries [of public employees] will be paid in full, all of the salaries under 2,000 shekels... In practice 40% of the PA's employees, who are the dynamo engine of the economy, will receive their salaries in full, at 100%, because nearly 40% of the PA's employees receive less than 2,000 [shekels]... Today, we will pay no less than 50% of the salaries… We have placed an upper limit of 10,000 shekels for the top of the pay scale of those receiving a maximum of 10,000 shekels - the honored ministers and their like. The burden of sacrifice and the burden of compromise falls on the top salaries... At the beginning of the month [March 2019]... the salaries were transferred in full to the prisoners, the wounded, and the Martyrs according to the orders of His Honor President [Abbas]. This is one of the national principles which no force on earth can make us deviate from."
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Deputy PA PM: “Non-payment of the public employees’ salaries is less significant than subtracting one penny from the family of a Martyr or prisoner who sacrificed his life and freedom for Palestine"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 8, 2019
       “[PA] Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Information Nabil Abu Rudeina said… during a tribute ceremony held yesterday [March 7, 2019] by the [PA] Ministry of Information for the ministry’s female employees for International Women’s Day… that the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners will be paid regardless of the cost, and that it is not possible to abandon or treat lightly the livelihood of the Palestinian people’s heroes.
The deputy prime minister said that the Palestinian national decision that was made by [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] and the Palestinian leadership is not to accept the tax money if even one penny is deducted by Israel (referring to implementation of the Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terror salaries; see note below –Ed.), and that non-payment of the public employees’ salaries is less significant than subtracting one penny from the family of a Martyr or prisoner who sacrificed his life and freedom for Palestine and its heroic people, such as heroic Karim Younes (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1 together with an accomplice), who until now has served 37 years in the occupation’s prisons.”
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Fatah official on prisoners’ salaries: "We will starve and go naked and we will not submit to the American-Zionist blackmail. The Palestinian leadership, led by Abbas, will remain loyal to the Martyrs’ families and the prisoners’ families"
Source: Al-Quds, Mar. 5, 2019
Headline: “Abbas Zaki: We will starve and go naked and not abandon the rights of the prisoners and Martyrs”
       “Fatah Movement Central Committee member and [Fatah] Commissioner for Arab and China Relations Abbas Zaki said… that the payment of the salaries and allowances of the families of the prisoners and the Martyrs (Shahids) symbolizes their loyalty and the return to the glowing ember of the Palestinian national struggle, and that the prisoners and Martyrs are the symbol of heroism for our people due to their sacrificing their lives and freedom for the Palestinian cause. He said: ‘We will starve and go naked and we will not submit to the American-Zionist blackmail. The Palestinian leadership, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, will remain loyal to the Martyrs’ families and the prisoners’ families.’”
Martyrs’ families thank Abbas for “determining that their monthly allowances must be paid immediately”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 4, 2019
Headline: “Sbeihat: The Martyrs’ families feel pride in light of the [PA] president’s positions”
      “The National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine expressed its appreciation yesterday [March 3, 2019] for [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ positions on all that is connected to the affairs of the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families in the various fields.
Secretary-General of The [National] Association [of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine] Muhammad Sbeihat said in a statement from the association: ‘The Martyrs’ families feel pride thanks to President [Abbas’] firm positions regarding them. They… greatly appreciate all of the decisions, the latest being the instructions he gave today to the [PA] government determining that their monthly allowances must be paid immediately, before all of the other sectors and without any reduction. This is despite the government’s financial situation, and particularly after the occupation robbed the tax money (refers to implementation of Israeli Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terrorist salaries; see note below –Ed.).’”

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PA PM Hamdallah: “The first salaries that we will pay are the salaries of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 4, 2019
      “Interim [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said in his speech at the ceremony launching the Arab Training Program that is being organized by the National School for Management: ‘With new aggression, Israel has deducted the salaries of the families of the prisoners and the Martyrs (Shahids) from the Palestinian tax money (refers to implementation of Israel's Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terrorist salaries; see note below –Ed.). This is in order to increase the strangulation and tighten the siege on our people financially and economically, and in order to destroy our ability to fulfill our obligations. We have emphasized and still emphasize that we are capable of overcoming the current crisis and strengthening our national enterprise through popular unity around His Honor [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas. We say to them that in accordance with President Mahmoud Abbas’ instructions, the first salaries that we will pay are the salaries of the Martyrs and the prisoners (today or tomorrow) [parentheses in source], and with patience and cooperation we will soon be able to pay part of the public employees’ salaries.’”

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Fatah official: “The leadership will continue to pay the salaries of the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners, whatever the consequences may be”
Source: Al-Quds, Mar. 3, 2019
Headline: "Al-Aloul: We will not agree to 'the deal of the century' and will continue to pay the salaries of the Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded regardless of the consequences"
        "Fatah Movement Deputy President (i.e., Chairman) [and Fatah Central Committee member] Mahmoud Al-Aloul again emphasized the leadership's refusal to accept what is called by America and Israel 'the deal of the century' (referring to US President Donald Trump's as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.)… and also emphasized that the leadership will continue to pay the salaries of the Martyrs (Shahids), wounded, and prisoners, whatever the consequences may be (refers to Israel's implementation of its Anti "Pay-to-Slay" Law; see note below –Ed.)…
Al-Aloul added… 'The priorities have changed for some of the Arab governments after the US and Israel succeeded in establishing the definition of Iran as the direct enemy of these governments, that it threatens their existence, and that it is the greatest danger to security in the Middle East region; meanwhile Israel has used this to strengthen the attack against the Palestinian people and its leadership.'"

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PLO Prisoners’ Affairs director emphasizes “the Palestinian leadership's adherence to its obligation to the prisoners… and to not conceding to the Israeli and American pressures calling to stop the Martyrs and prisoners' salaries”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 1, 2019
Headline: "Ramallah: Honoring the military financial staff that works on the prisoners' cause"
      "Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr honored Head of the IT Department in the Military Financial Directorate Jihad Yusuf and Director-General of Military Salaries Anis Nayfeh on Thursday [Feb. 28, 2019] at his office in Ramallah as a sign of honor for the efforts they have invested in serving the prisoners' cause and supporting them.
During the meeting… Abu Bakr emphasized the Palestinian leadership's adherence to its obligation to the prisoners and their relatives and to not conceding to the Israeli and American pressures calling to stop the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners' salaries (rawatib) and allowances (mukhassasat) (referring to implementation of Israeli Anti “Pay-for-Slay” law that deducts terror salaries; see note–Ed.)."

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PLO chief negotiator: Israel’s cut to tax money over terror salaries demands “political confrontation… and non-acceptance of the rest of the money“ so that Israel will not “steal” the money regularly
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 1, 2019
Headline: "Erekat: Trump and Kushner are running an election campaign for Netanyahu…"
      "PLO Executive Committee Secretary [and Fatah Central Committee member] Saeb Erekat said… in an interview on the [official] PA TV program Topic of the Day… regarding the theft of the Palestinian money by Israel (refers to implementation of the Anti "Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terror salaries; see note below –Ed.): 'The political reality requires a political confrontation with the occupation and non-acceptance of the rest of the money so that this will not turn into a regular means to which it will turn and steal the money whenever it wants.'"

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PA Presidential Office condemns “deduction of the salaries of the Martyrs’ families and the prisoners” and warns “about the danger in harming the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque”, which may lead to "religious conflict"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 28, 2019
      “The [PA] Presidential Office yesterday [Feb. 27, 2019] condemned the series of incessant Israeli attacks, invasions, and provocations. This was expressed by the settlers’ invasion of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, and prime among them extremist Israeli Parliament Member Yehuda Glick, as well as the occupation police breaking into the house of prayer at the Gate of Mercy [of the Old City of Jerusalem] (refers to Israel closing compound near Gate of Mercy after Jordanian Waqf reopened it in violation of a court order; see note below –Ed.).
The Presidential Office also condemned the deduction of the salaries of the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families and the prisoners from the Palestinian tax money (refers to implementation of the Israeli Anti “Pay-for-Slay” Law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), and the arrest of senior Palestinian officials such as Jerusalem District Governor Adnan Ghaith and [Fatah] Revolutionary Council member Zakariya Al-Zbeidi… It warned about the danger in harming the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, which will constitute a crossing of all the red lines, and which will lead to grave consequences that will be uncontrollable.”

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Palestinians from Gaza express support for PLO because "all of the prisoners... receive their salaries from the PLO, and that sometimes they are higher than salaries of judges and doctors"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 25, 2019
     “Dozens of intellectuals, politicians, academics, and even activists of [political] parties, members of various organizations, and veteran prisoners from the Gaza Strip expressed their full and voluntary support for the PLO and [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas…
Dr. Khader Mahjez said: ‘The PLO did not agree with me about my affiliation with Hamas when I was one of its [Hamas’] founders, but when I was imprisoned on charges [of being affiliated with] Hamas, the PLO paid me compensation and did not ask me about my organizational affiliation.’ …
Marwan Abu Shariah wrote: ‘I’m in favor of the PLO and concerned about its fate because when I was in prison my father went to a PLO ministry in Amman and received a monthly allowance from them for a married prisoner, without them asking him about my affiliation and my opinion on the PLO… I’m in favor of the PLO because I discovered that all of the prisoners, and prime among them the prisoners from Hamas and Islamic Jihad, receive their salaries from the PLO, and that sometimes they are higher than salaries of judges and doctors.'”
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Abbas in letter to Putin: Israeli “pay-for-slay” law is meant to prevent PA from “fulfilling its obligations to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs, who struggled for the freedom of their people… and who are worthy of all aid”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 24, 2019
      “PLO Executive Committee member and Fatah Movement Central Committee member Azzam Al-Ahmad received Russian Ambassador to the State of Palestine Aydar Aganin at his office in Ramallah yesterday [Feb. 23, 2019].
Al-Ahmad gave the Russian ambassador a written letter from [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas for [Russian] President Vladimir Putin. The letter deals with the recent developments and the cutting of part of the tax money by [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s government (refers to implementation of law to deduct terrorist salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) in a way that contradicts the economic Paris Agreement (see note below –Ed.) that was signed between the two sides – a step that contradicts international laws and that is meant to blackmail the Palestinian leadership and exert pressure on it, in order to prevent it from fulfilling its obligations to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), who struggled for the freedom of their people and the end of the occupation, and who are worthy of all aid – regardless of the difficulties and pressures.”
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Fatah student movement at Bethlehem University willing to “donate the Student Union Council budget and all of its allowances to the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 23, 2019
Headline: “The Shabiba of Bethlehem University announced its willingness to donate the Student Union Council budget and all of its allowances to the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
      “The [Fatah] Shabiba Student Movement at Bethlehem University announced its willingness to donate the budget of the Student Union at the university and all of their allowances to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded. This was after the occupation government’s decision to steal the money allocated to the Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded from the Palestinian tax money (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.).”

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Fatah official: PA to boycott Israeli products, turn to international courts over “theft” of funds cut from Israeli transfer of tax money
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: "Al-Aloul: A series of steps will be implemented in order to deal with the occupation's decision to steal the tax money"
      "Fatah Movement Deputy Chairman [and Fatah Central Committee member] Mahmoud Al-Aloul announced that the committee appointed to execute the [PLO] Central Council's decisions has decided to carry out some steps in order to deal with Israel's decision to steal the Palestinian money (referring to the implementation of a law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), including boycotting Israeli goods. Al-Aloul said in statements to [the official PA] radio [station] The Voice of Palestine: 'A committee has been established to prepare a list of Israeli products that have a local alternative, in order to prevent the entry of these Israeli products into the Palestinian market.' … He also emphasized that the committee has decided to turn to the international courts in order to put Israel on trial for the theft of the tax money, in addition to implementing steps regarding reexamining all of the types of relations with Israel on all levels."
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Fatah official warns of “unprecedented Israeli escalation in settlement, terror, daily invasions of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and the seizure of the tax money… we will not sell the prisoners, the Martyrs, Jerusalem, or independence for money”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: “Rajoub briefed Aboul Gheit and Shukri on the recent Palestinian developments”
      “Fatah Movement Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub briefed Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit on the recent developments in the situation, and particularly on the political developments in Palestine… Rajoub said in a statement after the meeting: ‘We as Palestinians are standing before an unprecedented Israeli escalation in settlement, terror, daily invasions of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and the seizure of the tax money – which is Palestinian money – because of what we provide to the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and their families (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), which constitutes a permanent matter in our lives since the outbreak of the Palestinian revolution. This will create difficult financial conditions, but we will not sell the prisoners, the Martyrs, Jerusalem, or independence for money.’”

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PLO Chief Negotiator “emphasized the Palestinian leadership’s decision not to receive the tax money if the deduction [of equivalent of terrorists’ salaries] is carried out”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: “Erekat: The American-Israeli decisions are the continued execution of what is called the deal of the century”
      “PLO Executive Committee Secretary Saeb Erekat held separate meetings with eight members of the French National Assembly accompanied by French Consul General Pierre Cochard, with the head of the [Temporary] International Presence in Hebron (TIPH), and with European Union Representative in Palestine Ralph Tarraf… Erekat emphasized the State of Palestine’s rejection of the theft of the Palestinian people’s money through the deduction and theft of 42 million [Israeli] shekels a month (refers to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), and also emphasized the Palestinian leadership’s decision not to receive the tax money if the deduction is carried out.”
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Abbas speech: "We categorically refuse the Israeli measure [to cut tax transfers to the PA] and we also refused to receive the remaining funds after the deduction"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: “The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the violent acts and hatred in France”
         “The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates condemned the acts of violence, extremism, and hatred that took place in friendly France, and considered them part of the anti-Semitic expressions that are unacceptable to us and to the international community. In a press statement yesterday [Feb. 21, 2019], the Ministry of Foreign Affairs emphasized the State of Palestine’s standing by France against these crimes, regardless of their source, and expressed its full solidarity with friendly France, its President [Emmanuel Macron], its government, and its people in the struggle against hatred, racism, and Antisemitism in all of their forms. It should be noted that a series of incidents took place recently in France, including the vandalizing of 96 Jewish gravestones with swastikas at a cemetery in Quatzenheim, in Alsace. Swastikas (a Nazi symbol) [parentheses in source] were also sprayed on pictures of late politician [and Holocaust survivor] Simone [Weil], and anonymous people cut down trees that were planted to commemorate the memory of a Jew [Ilan Halimi] who was tortured to death in 2006.”
PA finance minister: PA may cut salaries to employees but salaries to terrorists and their families will be paid in full
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: “Bishara: The salaries will be paid on time, but possibly not in full”
     “[PA] Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara announced that the [PA] government will pay the salaries of the public employees on time, but they are likely to be partial, other than the pension stipends and the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the wounded, and the prisoners, which will be paid in full. Bishara said this yesterday [Feb. 21, 2019] at a joint press conference with [PA] Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Riyad Al-Malki, following a meeting with consuls and representatives of European Union states in order to explain the consequences of the Israeli decision to deduct the government’s payments to the families of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded from the tax money (refers to implementation of law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), and he added: ‘There is an official decision that was made yesterday, Wednesday [Feb. 20, 2019], not to accept the tax money if even a single penny is missing from it.’"
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Activists on social media criticize Palestinians expressing financial concerns over the PA’s decision to reject all Israeli tax transfers following “pay-for-slay” deduction
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
Headline: "The Israeli theft – a stage in the Israeli sadism"
      "The Palestinian response to the occupation's decision to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and the Martyrs' (Shahids') families from the tax money (refers to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) – which is expressed by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas' decision not to accept any partial amount of the tax money and his determination to continue to pay the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs' families – was popularly anticipated… Activists on social media criticized the attempts by some bodies to draw attention from the Palestinian leadership’s firm position regarding the prisoners and the Martyrs' families and turn the conversation in the direction of concern for the fate of the public employees' salaries. Many of the activists thought that those spreading this news are serving the occupation’s goals that strive to increase the pressure on the Palestinian leadership and people."
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PA District Governor: “The cause of the prisoners and Martyrs is among the priorities of the Palestinian people and leadership… [Abbas’ position is that] we will not accept the tax money if even one penny is missing from it”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 22, 2019
     “Dozens of civilians took part in a protest and solidarity vigil yesterday [Feb. 21, 2019] to condemn the Israeli occupation’s theft of the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) allowances (mukhassasat) (refers to implementation of law to deduct terrorist salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.). During the vigil, which was organized by the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs in Salfit and the Fatah Movement’s Salfit branch, Salfit District Governor Ibrahim Al-Balawi said that the cause of the prisoners and Martyrs is among the priorities of the Palestinian people and leadership, and this has been a firm position throughout time until now, and we will not concede our right to our money. He added that the occupation has decided to punish our people through the most precious thing it has – the sons of the Martyrs and the prisoners who are behind bars. However, [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] has adhered to his firm and latest position which he will not concede, and to his emphasis that we will not accept the tax money if even one penny is missing from it.’”
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Fatah spokesman ensures terrorists and murderers will be paid: “Our heroic prisoners… will remain the diamond in the crown”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 21, 2019

Official PA TV program
Talk of the Hour

Fatah Revolutionary Council member and official Fatah Spokesman Osama Al-Qawasmi: “All of the blessings to our heroic prisoners behind the occupation’s bars, who have made the sacrifice of their freedom and their separation from their children, their wives, and their homes… Israel wants us to punish our brave prisoners and our Martyrs for their legitimate struggle for freedom and independence… The prisoners, the Martyrs, and their families –will remain the diamond in the crown… and the headline of our honor. This lion [PA President Abbas]… is emphasizing once again… that the promise is a promise - a promise to the Martyrs… We are saying it on behalf of the Fatah Movement – if a single dollar is left in our hands, we will pay it to the families of the Martyrs and to the prisoners… Our Martyrs are heroes and our prisoners are heroes.”
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PA minister: “We won’t… accept any partial amount of the tax money” if Israel deducts from it
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 21, 2019

Official PA TV News

PA Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Riyad Al-Malki: "It was agreed yesterday in a meeting with His Honor the President [Abbas] to send an official message to the Israeli side, according to which we will not agree to accept any partial amount of the tax money that is to be officially transferred to the Palestinian side. This message has been conveyed to the Israeli side in a clear manner."
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PA Minister of Finance explains pay cuts: Terrorists keep a full salary, but public employees and private sector must sacrifice
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 21, 2019

Press conference by PA Minister of Foreign Affairs Al-Malki and PA Minister of Finance Bishara

PA Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara: "Our leadership’s decision is that if [Israel] deducts [even] a penny we will not accept the tax money... [The public employees receiving] 2,000 [shekels] are secure 100%. [Those receiving] an additional 1,000 [will be paid] at a rate of 60%-70%... Those who will sacrifice in this equation are those whose salaries are higher. We want to preserve the lower salaries. We will have a single standard for the whole society. The private sector – at the least we will not stop its solvency. The pensioners – we will protect their pensions 100%. The prisoners and released prisoners – 100%. Those are the instructions of the President and the leadership – and we will not disappoint them on this matter. We do not want to delude you, we [stand] before difficulties."
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Fatah spokesman about imprisoned terrorists and murderers: “Our heroic prisoners… will remain the diamond in the crown”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 21, 2019
Official PA TV program Talk of the Hour, hosting Fatah Revolutionary Council member and official Fatah Spokesperson Osama Al-Qawasmi

Fatah Revolutionary Council member and official Fatah Spokesman Osama Al-Qawasmi: “All of the blessings to our heroic prisoners who are behind the occupation’s bars, who have made the sacrifice of their freedom and their separation from their children, their wives, their homes, and the alleyways of the Old City of Nablus, Bethlehem, Hebron, Jerusalem, and Gaza for our freedom. Israel wants us to punish our brave prisoners and our Martyrs for their legitimate struggle for freedom and independence. It wants us to deliver a blow to the national identity with our own hands… The prisoners, the Martyrs, and their families – we have not abandoned them since 1965 and they will remain the diamond in the crown, the headline of a legitimate struggle, and the headline of our honor. Therefore, this lion [PA President Mahmoud Abbas] who is carrying out Ribat (i.e., religious conflict/war over land claimed to be Islamic) in his tent, in the Muqata’a (i.e., the PA headquarters), is emphasizing once again that the oath is an oath, that the promise is a promise.”

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PA Jericho District Governor: Israel’s cut to tax transfers is “part of the series of steps whose goal is to harm the sanctity of the struggle of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 21, 2019
Headline: “Jericho: Protest vigil against Israel’s theft of the prisoners and Martyrs’ allowances”
      “Respected figures from the Jericho district participated in a protest vigil against the occupation’s theft of the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) allowances from the Palestinian tax money (refers to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.)… Jericho District Governor Jihad Abu Al-Asal said that the occupation’s decision is part of the series of steps whose goal is to harm the sanctity of the struggle of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded.”
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PA government: “We will not exchange our rights for money, and we will always stand by the prisoners and their families"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 20, 2019
Headline: "The [PA] government: We will not exchange our rights for money, and we will always stand by the prisoners and their families"
     "The [PA] government emphasized that the Israeli government must understand that our people… will continue its incessant struggle and resistance generation after generation against the occupation, its policy, and its racist laws by all means that the international conventions guarantee to an occupied people… During its weekly meeting, which was held yesterday [Feb. 19, 2019] in Ramallah led by [PA] Prime Minister [Rami Hamdallah], it emphasized that the decision by the Israeli so-called 'Cabinet' to deduct approximately half a billion shekels from the tax money (refers to implementation of an Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.)… is just [another] decision in the series of decisions by the Israeli government… whose goal is to revoke all of the signed agreements, as part of a plan to eliminate the PA…
The prime minister emphasized that we will not exchange our rights and our firm positions for money."
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Director of PLO prisoners’ commission: Israel’s cutting of PA tax transfers over terror salaries “will be tantamount to an actual bomb that will blow up in the face of the occupation”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 20, 2019
      "Director of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr said that the Israeli crime – the blatant theft of the money of the State of Palestine under the pretext of deducting the salaries that are paid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners (referring to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) – will be tantamount to an actual bomb that will blow up in the face of the occupation.  This was said during his meeting with a Fatah Movement delegation… Abu Bakr explained that the Palestinian leadership, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, emphasizes that the salaries of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners must not be harmed, and that the last penny in the PA Ministry of Finance will be given with priority to this fighting group… Abu Bakr noted that this theft contradicts all of the international norms and conventions, and that silence over this crime of theft by broad daylight will open wide the gates of confrontation with the occupation. He added that the Palestinian people, its leadership, and its institutions will fight this racist extremism, and that the occupation and its leaders will pay a heavy price."
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PA TV filler glorifies Martyrs, praises Abbas’ reaction to terror salary law, attacks US peace plan: “The Martyrs and prisoners are the holy ones of the Palestinian memory”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2019
Official PA TV, filler

The screenshot shows the funeral of a dead terrorist wrapped in a Palestinian flag and keffiyeh (Arab headdress).
Text on screen: “The Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners are the holy ones of the Palestinian memory”


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PLO official: Israeli 'pay-for-slay' law is "theft", part of policy to "criminalizing all forms of resistance [and] accusing our people of terror"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2019
       "PLO Executive Committee member [and head of the PLO Department of Diplomacy and Public Policy] Dr. Hanan Ashrawi said that 'This organized and deliberate theft of the Palestinian people's money and resources (referring to implementation of an Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) reflects the occupation state’s path, which is based on criminalizing all forms of resistance, accusing our people of terror, demonizing it, imposing collective punishments on it, and financially and politically blackmailing it. These steps contradict international humanitarian law and the agreements that were signed, and they are additional proof of Israel's exaggeration in punishing anyone that rejects its occupation and resists its steps.'"

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Op-ed: Israel law is “a reflection of the principle of theft and robbery as the Israeli regime’s MO since the establishment of the first armed Jewish terrorist organization, but also... of the imperialist state that sponsors Israel (i.e., the US)"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2019
Excerpt of an op-ed by Muwaffaq Matar, Fatah Revolutionary Council member and regular columnist for the official PA daily

     “The occupation government’s decision to implement the law to deduct and freeze money that the Palestinian government pays to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners… is not only a reflection of the principle of theft and robbery as the Israeli regime’s modus operandi since the establishment of the first armed Jewish terrorist organization, but also a natural reflection of the modus operandi of the imperialist state that sponsors Israel (i.e., the US)… The [Israeli] Cabinet’s decision, on the other hand, is a reflection of a modus operandi of expulsion, settlement, and colonialist occupation, which the white settler invaders implemented on the American continent when they eliminated the original residents, the Indians, by murderous means… The goal here is to make the Palestinian people without identity and without a homeland, without land and an address, and this in itself is the greatest crime of theft in history, exceeding the crime of exterminating the Indians… and the Palestinian who is prevented from returning to his home and land… is killed a thousand times today, at a time when there are human rights laws in the world.”
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Abbas pledges to pay terrorist prisoners and families of dead terrorists
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 19, 2019

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas:
"[Israel] said that... the government of the State of Palestine pays money to terrorists. Who are these terrorists? The Martyrs, the prisoners, and the wounded. From our perspective, we have been paying them, their families, since 1965. For when a person dies, I can’t abandon his family. It is important to me to take care of his family and to pay it... If we will have only 20 or 30 million shekels - and that is what is paid to the Martyrs' families – we will pay it to the Martyrs' families. If the PA won’t have a single penny aside from that, I will pay the Martyrs' families, the prisoners' families, and the families of the wounded. This must be clear."
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Editorial in PA daily supports Abbas’ stance against US, tax cuts: “Palestine's money will go first to its sons, to the Martyrs and prisoners, Israeli-US policy is "delusion of the despicable racist arrogance”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2019
Excerpt of editorial by the official PA daily

      "The American administration will resort to harsher and graver pressure against [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas so that he will accept [US President Donald] Trump's Zionist deal (i.e., referring to Trump's as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan), and we are relating to this and emphasizing it because the Israeli decision to steal the Palestinian tax money today [Feb. 19, 2019] (referring to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) is nothing but an American decision basically, and President Mahmoud Abbas knows this… The American administration must understand once and for all that President Mahmoud Abbas will not be like Faust who made a pact with the devil after selling his soul to him, because the believing soul of President Mahmoud Abbas is the soul of Palestine, which is not for sale or to be bargained over… Palestine's money will go first to its sons, to the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners. 'If we have only one penny left, it will go to these righteous people' – this is President Mahmoud Abbas' firm decision, from which he will not retreat in any way… The American-Israeli theft of Palestine's money is nothing but a delusion of the despicable racist arrogance..."

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Fatah supports Abbas decision to refuse all Israeli tax transfers; “The Martyrs and Prisoners` cause is a cause of the entire Palestinian people… their salaries will not be harmed”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2019
      "The Fatah Movement Central Committee discussed some political issues and internal affairs during a meeting that was held yesterday afternoon [Feb. 18, 2019] at the headquarters of the [Fatah] Movement [Commission for] Mobilization and Organization in Ramallah…
The committee conveyed to [PA] President [Mahmoud] Abbas a recommendation to refuse the unjust Israeli decision to deduct the salaries (rawatib) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money (i.e., referring to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from the PA tax money; see note below), and not to accept them if any amount is deducted. They emphasized that the Martyrs and Prisoners' cause is a cause of the entire Palestinian people and the symbol of its struggle, and we will not agree to haggle over it, and their salaries will not be harmed regardless of what Israeli pressures there may be."

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PLO Chief Negotiator: Israeli decision to cut tax monies is “part of the Israeli-American plan to destroy the PA… Those carrying out normalization with Israel are sticking a knife in the back of the [Palestinian] people”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 18, 2019
        “PLO Executive Committee Secretary Saeb Erekat said yesterday [Feb. 17, 2019]: ‘The deduction of the salaries of the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families from the tax money (refers to Israeli law deducting terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), which Israel intends to carry out, is part of the Israeli-American plan to destroy the PA, in parallel with disconnecting the Gaza Strip from the West Bank. This plan is the “deal of the century” (refers to US President Donald Trump’s as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.).’
In statements that he gave to [the official PA] radio [station] The Voice of Palestine, he added that Israel will carry out this step after it has denied all of the signed agreements… Erekat turned to the Arabs and said: ‘Those who are going to Warsaw – what are they going for? You spoke about the Arab Peace Initiative. What has changed that you are rewarding [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu?’ He emphasized that those carrying out normalization with Israel are sticking a knife in the back of the [Palestinian] people.”
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PA TV: “Our Martyrs and prisoners are the source of our glory and pride”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 18, 2019

Official PA TV newsreader:
"Our Martyrs and prisoners are the source of our glory and pride. They are more honorable than all of us… This was said by… President Mahmoud Abbas: 'If we have only one penny left, we will give it to the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners.'"
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The PA TV newsreader responded to a decision by the Israeli Parliament on Feb. 17, 2019 to implement the deduction law. Click "full article" to learn more.
PLO official accuses Israel of attempting to destroy the PA following withholding of equivalent of terror salaries from PA tax money
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Feb. 17, 2019
The following was posted on WAFA's website in English

Headline: Israel, US attempting to destroy Palestinian Authority, says PLO official"
    "Ahmad Majdalani, member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), said on Sunday that Israel is now attempting to destroy the Palestinian Authority through more financial sanctions in partnership with the United States administration. In a press statement, Majdalani said these attempts 'are done through more sanctions and procedures in violation of international law and the resolutions of international legitimacy, by imposing a financial blockade [of the PA].' '[Israel] believes this will compel the Palestinian leadership to comply with the so-called economic peace plan at the expense of political and legal rights [of the Palestinian people] … The Palestinian people may not be compromised by political money,' he continued. Majdalani condemned plans by the Israeli government to deduct from the tax revenues it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, equal to the amounts of the salaries the PA pays to the Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails and the families of those killed by the Israeli occupation forces."

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PA Presidential Spokesman accuses Israel of "piracy" for cutting terror salaries equivalent from tax monies transfered to the PA
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Feb. 17, 2019
The following text was posted on WAFA's website in English:

Headline: "Presidency: Israel's decision to deduct from PA tax revenues a piracy"
      "Any deduction from the Palestinian clearing funds is totally rejected and is considered a piracy of the Palestinian people's money, President Mahmoud Abbas' spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, said in a statement. The Israeli government decided on Sunday to deduct over $130 million from the tax funds it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority on goods destined to the Palestinian areas for what it claims is the amount of money the PA pays families of Palestinians held or killed by Israel for resisting its occupation. 'The firm position of the President in which he affirmed that we will not accept any harm to the livelihood of our imprisoned heroes and the families of martyrs and wounded,' said Abu Rudeineh. 'We consider this arbitrary Israeli decision to be a one-sided blow to the signed agreements, including the Paris Protocols,' he said. Abu Rudeineh pointed out that this decision will have serious repercussions at all levels and will be given a priority at the meeting of the leadership led by the President during the coming days."
Fatah: Deducting terror salaries from Israeli tax transfers to PA is “theft”; “This will not prevent us from continuing to take care of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs at any price”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Feb. 17, 2019
Headline: "Fatah: The deduction of our money by Israel is theft and robbery; the pressure will lead to an explosion"
        "The Fatah Movement said that the deduction of the money for the salaries of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners by Israel (referring to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) constitutes theft, robbery, a ruse, and a policy of thuggery… Fatah added: 'This step is absolutely offensive and unacceptable. This will not prevent us from continuing to take care of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs at any price. This step will be met with a clear official and popular Palestinian position.'
[Fatah] Revolutionary Council member and [Official] Fatah Spokesperson Osama Al-Qawasmi said: 'If Israel and the US think that the rounds of political and economic pressures that are coming one after the other will weigh on the Palestinian leadership and on our magnificent people… and that they will succeed in changing the political position regarding the rights of the Palestinian people – and primarily Jerusalem, the capital of the State of Palestine – we ask to emphasize at this opportunity, on behalf of Fatah, that this is a complete delusion.’"

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PA PM responds to Israeli cut to PA tax money over terror salaries as "a theft of the general Palestinian money, and a crime of an international nature"
Source: Facebook page of PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, Feb. 17, 2019
Text posted on the Facebook page of PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah

Posted text: "The law on deducting the allowances of the prisoners and wounded from the tax money, which the Israeli Parliament ratified last June [2018], and which the Israeli [Security] Cabinet ratified a short time ago (refers to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), is nothing but a continuation of the racist Israeli legislation… and the collapse of the two-state solution and every opportunity to establish an independent and sovereign Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as its capital.
This is a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention (see note below –Ed.) and of the international conventions, and a violation of the interim agreement [of the Oslo Accords] that was signed in September 1995 by Israel and the PLO (see note below –Ed.). Therefore, putting hands on this money and holding onto it is considered a theft of the general Palestinian money, and a crime of an international nature."
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Palestinian National Council responds to cut in Israeli tax transfers: “This decision is part of the series of steps whose goal is to harm the sanctity of the struggle of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Feb. 17, 2019
Headline: “The [Palestinian] National Council: The deduction of the PA money is political and financial terror against our people"
      “This evening [Feb. 17, 2019] the [Palestinian] National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO) condemned the Israeli Cabinet’s decision to actually begin the deduction and theft of an amount equal to the allowances of the prisoners and their families and the allowances of the families of the Palestinian Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded from the tax money that Israel collects for the State of Palestine (referring to the Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.).
The Palestinian National Council said today in a statement that this decision is part of the series of steps whose goal is to harm the sanctity of the struggle of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded, and to pressure the Palestinian leadership to stop paying them these allowances. It added that this is political and financial terror that the occupation government is implementing so that [the Palestinians] will agree to the so-called 'deal of the century' (i.e., referring to US President Donald Trump's as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan)…"
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PA minister reacts to Israel’s cut to PA tax transfers: "This theft against our people and its resources is liable to endanger the financial activity… which will lead to a deterioration of the difficult financial situation"
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Feb. 17, 2019
Headline: “The [PA] Minister: The theft of our money by Israel is a blow to the national economy”
         “[PA] Minister of National Economy Abir Odeh said today (Sunday) [Feb. 17, 2019] that the fact that Israel has stolen from the State of Palestine’s tax money (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) is a violation that joins the endless Israeli violations of the Paris Economic Protocol (i.e., Paris Agreement; see note below). The minister added that this theft against our people and its resources is liable to endanger the financial activity and cause a drop in it, which will lead to a deterioration of the [already] difficult financial situation. She warned about the consequences of this decision on the different levels. Minister Odeh called on the international community to carry out its obligations regarding the Israeli decision, which contradicts international law and whose goal is to impose a siege on our people and blackmail it financially in order to execute [Israel’s] racist policy while conspiring with the American administration. Minister Odeh noted that the Palestinian [PA] government is examining the existing options to respond to this decision.”

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Fatah official: “The Palestinian leadership led by President Mahmoud Abbas will not submit to the Israeli theft… The prisoners and Martyrs' salaries are a red line, and they will be paid in a regular manner”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 16, 2019
     "During the weekly sit-in strike by the prisoners' relatives at the Gaza headquarters of the International Committee of the Red Cross, yesterday [Feb. 18, 2019] the prisoners' families again emphasized their faith in [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian leadership regarding the aid being given to the prisoners' cause and the emphasis that they will not submit to the Israeli theft after the deduction of the prisoners and Martyrs' (Shahids') allowances (mukhassasat) (refers to implementation of Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from the PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), and demanded to turn to the [International] Criminal Court and punish Israel for its racist decisions…
Released prisoner and Director of the Fatah Movement Commission of the Prisoners, Martyrs, [and Wounded in Gaza] Tayseer Al-Bardini said that the Palestinian leadership led by President Mahmoud Abbas will not submit to the Israeli theft, particularly since the president always emphasizes that the prisoners and Martyrs' salaries (rawatib) are a red line, and they will be paid in a regular manner. This requires additional popular and political activity in order to support the prisoners' rights and stand against the racist policies that Israel is implementing against the prisoners and the people."
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Abbas advisor: "The Palestinians will not be silent about the acts of theft that Israel is committing by cutting the Palestinian money and we will turn to the international courts"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 15, 2019
      “[PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas'] advisor on Foreign Affairs and International Relations and acting Head of the [PLO] Department for Expatriates’ Affairs Nabil Shaath said that the Palestinian people does not have to wait for the official announcement of ‘the deal of the century’ (refers to US President Donald Trump’s as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.) in order to express our opinions about it, and we will not exchange our national rights for millions.
During separate meetings that he held on Thursday [Feb. 14, 2019] with the ambassadors of South Korea, Japan, Hungary, and Tunisia, he added that the Trump administration has lost the ability to sponsor the peace process due to the many steps it has taken against our people’s rights…
He also emphasized that the Palestinians will not be silent about the acts of theft that Israel is committing by cutting the Palestinian money (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), and we will turn to the international courts to restore the rights of the members of our people.”
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PA Foreign Ministry condemns Israeli decision to cut tax transfers to PA as “stealing”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 12, 2019
Headline: "The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates: We will protect our people's money according to international law"
      "The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatiates condemned the occupation's decision to steal the Palestinian tax money (i.e., refers to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below) under false excuses and pretexts, and in a way that contradicts all of the agreements that were signed and the Israeli commitments on this matter. It also considered this an inseparable part of the occupation's comprehensive and open war against our people, its leadership, and its firm and legal national rights, and as an attempt to destroy the foundations of our people standing firm on all of the land of our homeland and its adherence to the basic principles of its national rights.”
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PLO Prisoners’ Affairs director claims Israel wants to "criminalize the Palestinian people’s struggle... to present them as terrorists and to prevent their families from [receiving] salaries that will support them"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 12, 2019
Headline: “The Hebrew media is falsifying the facts in order to criminalize the Palestinian struggle”
     “Once again, in a scenario that repeats itself, the occupation government is trying to extort the Palestinians through the use of the returns from the tax money, which to them constitute a large part of the public income…
Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr emphasized in a press statement that the commission will not concede to the [Israeli] law, and said: ‘As the Palestinian leadership has emphasized, the salaries (rawatib) will not be harmed.’ He added: ‘They want to criminalize the Palestinian people’s struggle before the world, to present them as terrorists and to prevent their families from [receiving] salaries that will support them, while the Israeli criminals receive three salaries (sic., Israeli criminals receive no money).”

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PA daily editorial attacks Israeli cut to PA tax transfers; accuses Israelis of inciting to assassinate Abbas
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 12, 2019
Excerpt of editorial by the official PA daily

    “The American-Israeli war against the Palestinian legitimacy, its leadership, and its national release project is growing stronger and escalating: The theft of the Palestinian tax money (referring to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) not just to tighten the financial siege on the PA, but also in order to harm the symbols of our souls, our national memory, and the history of our struggle – our Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners whose money Israel is stealing on the pretext of deducting their salaries (rawatib). There is also the ongoing criminal Zionist settler incitement against [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas in order to assassinate and eliminate him (apparently referring to the Derech Haim Movement’s campaign and the demonstrations it organized in Tel Aviv following the brutal murder of Ori Ansbacher; see notes below –Ed.).”

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PA minister: Abbas will refuse to receive Israeli tax transfers if deductions are made following Israeli terror law
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 11, 2019
       "[PA] Minister of Civil Affairs [and Fatah Central Committee member] Hussein Al-Sheikh said yesterday [Feb. 10, 2019] that he has conveyed an official message at the request of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas that emphasizes that 'He will refuse to receive the collected [tax] money if Israel deducts even one penny from it (referring to an Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.).'
Al-Sheikh added to the French news agency that 'Large international financial bodies and institutions have begun to respond to the American demand to impose a heightened financial siege on the PA.' Al-Sheikh continued: 'Washington has requested to stop the granting of financial aid to the PA and published a memorandum to banks not to receive transfers to the accounts of the [Palestinian] Authority (PMW could find no record of such a US memorandum –Ed.).' He revealed that 'These sanctions began with the prevention of the transfer of an Iraqi grant of $10,000,000 that was recently given to the Arab League, and the league could not transfer it due to the refusal of all the banks to receive it in order to transfer it to the PA treasury or the [Palestinian] National Fund.'"
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Fatah council: “The prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded have sacrificed that which is most precious to them for the homeland, and Fatah will remain loyal to their sacrifice”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 10, 2019
Excerpt of a statement summarizing a session of the Fatah Revolutionary Council.

       “The prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded have sacrificed that which is most precious to them for the homeland, and Fatah will remain loyal to their sacrifice. It will continue to fulfill its duty and obligations to them and to their families, despite the blackmail, pressures, and theft (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from the tax money Israel collects for the PA; see note below –Ed.), as severe as they may be. As [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has emphasized more than once, this is a red line. The council condemns the occupation’s targeting of the prisoners, its break-ins [to the prisoners’ wings], and its recurring attacks against the brave prisoners. It condemns the occupying power’s policy of medical neglect in the strongest language, and prays for the 214 Martyr prisoners since 1967, the last of whom was Martyr Fares Baroud (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1). The council salutes all of the prisoners...”

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PA government commits to “the rights of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners, and… to allowing them to live with dignity”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 6, 2019
     "During its weekly meeting that was held yesterday (Tuesday) [Feb. 5, 2019] in Ramallah, led by [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, the [PA] government condemned the leaks to the media by the Israeli government… regarding its intention to cut the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs' (Shahids') families from the Palestinian tax money (on Feb. 4, 2019, it was reported that Israel is about to start implementing its law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.)… The government emphasized that the tax money is purely Palestinian money that belongs to the public coffers and the members of our people, and that deducting from these revenues is nothing but a continuation of the theft of billions of Palestinian [shekels] by Israel… The government emphasized that the Palestinian leadership led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, which has announced that it is rejecting the American aid (the PA chose to stop receiving the US aid in order to avoid being sued in US courts; see note below –Ed.), is emphasizing today that it refuses to submit to blackmail. It added that it is committed to the rights of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners, and committed to allowing them to live with dignity."

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Abbas: “The Martyrs… are sacred, [so are] the wounded and the prisoners. We must pay all of them” – broadcast 17 times in four weeks
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 17, 2018

Official PA TV filler, excerpt of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Oct. 28, 2018 speech about terrorist salaries


PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "I say this to everyone – the salaries of our Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded are a red line. They [Israel] try by all means, and exert pressure by all means, and they continue to exert: ‘It cannot be that you will pay.’ And they’ll even deduct our money that’s in their hands. They’ll deduct from it the amount that we pay to the Martyrs. We have said that this is a red line and we will not allow [it]. From 1965 until now, this matter is sacred to us. The Martyrs and their families are sacred, [and so are] the wounded and the prisoners. We must pay all of them. If one penny remains in our hands it is for them and not for the living."

This video aired on official PA TV on Nov. 16, 17, 19, 21, 24, 27, 28, 30, 2018 and on Dec. 2, 3, 5, and 17, 2018, for a total of 17 times over four weeks. Some of the broadcasts occured twice a day.
Fatah official: Caring for terrorist prisoners is a “sacred obligation,” whose salaries will be harmed “under no circumstances”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 4, 2018
     “Fatah Movement Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub emphasized in a press statement yesterday [Dec. 3, 2018] that Fatah and its leadership, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, views the prisoners’ cause, their release, and the care for them and their families as a national responsibility and a sacred obligation that is not subject to debate and must not be neglected… Rajoub added that the magnificent prisoners’ movement will remain – as it always has been – the spearhead of the Palestinian national struggle. He said that our brave prisoners and our released prisoners will continue to be stars of whom we are proud [along with] their families, and we appreciate the great sacrifices that they have made for Palestine… He emphasized… that under no circumstances and under no conditions will their salaries (rawatib) be harmed.”

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Fatah official: salaries to terrorists and their families a “national responsibility and sacred obligation,” there will be “no harm… to the salaries”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 4, 2018
Official PA TV News, on Fatah Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub emphasizing Fatah’s commitment to paying terrorist prisoners’ salaries

Official PA TV newsreader: “Fatah Movement Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub emphasized that Fatah and the leadership headed by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas consider the prisoners’ cause, their release, and taking care of their families a national responsibility and sacred obligation that is indisputable and cannot be neglected. Rajoub added that Fatah’s position on this matter is solid, and that there [will be] no harm under any conditions and circumstances to the salaries (rawatib) and payments (istihqaqat) to the prisoners and released prisoners.”

Jibril Rajoub also holds the following positions: Head of the PLO Supreme Council for Sport and Youth Affairs, Chairman of the Palestinian Football Association, Chairman of the Palestine Olympic Committee, and Chairman of the Palestinian Scout Association (PSA).
Official PA daily quotes Israeli Justice Minister as admitting Israel has failed to stop the transfer of tax money to the PA in accordance with the law passed deducting in the amount the PA pays terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 24, 2018
Headline: "Shaked: We have not succeeded in stopping the transfer of the Palestinian prisoners' allowances"

"Israeli Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked from the Jewish Home party emphasized that the present government will not be able to complete its full term until November of next year [2019], and recognized this government’s failure to prevent the transfer of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and the families of the Palestinian Martyrs (Shahids) (refers to a new law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.)…
Shaked said [this] during an interview that was published yesterday [Nov. 23, 2018] in the Hebrew newspaper Yediot Aharonot."

Law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money - Israeli law stating that the PA payments to terrorists and the families of dead terrorists is a financial incentive to terror. The law instructs the state to deduct and freeze the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA. Should the PA stop these payments for a full year, the Israeli government would have the option of giving all or part of the frozen money to the PA. The law was enacted on July 2, 2018.
During the parliamentary vote, the law's sponsor Avi Dichter said: “The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee received much help in its deliberations... from Palestinian Media Watch who provided us with authentic data that enabled productive and professional deliberations, nuances that are very difficult to achieve without precise data.” [Israeli Parliament website, July 2, 2018]

PA Justice Minister in presence of Sudanese dictator: Israel is carrying out "torture, deprivation, and medical neglect" against Palestinian prisoners; trying to prevent the PA from paying prisoners and Martyrs’ families
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 24, 2018
    "The Council of Arab Ministers of Justice concluded its 34th session yesterday [Nov. 23, 2018], which was held in Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, in the presence of His Honor Sudanese President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir (see note below –Ed.)… [PA] Minister of Justice Ali Abu Diyak participated in the 34th session of the Council of Arab Ministers of Justice, in the presence of Ambassador of the State of Palestine in Sudan Dr. Samir Oudeh… Abu Diyak said that the series of racist legislations against our brave prisoners is continuing, as the occupation is exaggerating in the methods of torture, deprivation, and medical neglect of the prisoners, and has turned to using its racist means of legislation in an attempt to break the willpower of our people and its prisoners that are resolute behind the walls of the Israeli prisons. He noted that the Israeli occupation has published a law to put children under 14 on trial (refers to law to detain terrorists under age 14 until they are old enough to be imprisoned –Ed.) and a law to steal the Palestinian tax money in a desperate attempt to blackmail us and prevent us from paying the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners."

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PLO director of prisoners assures terrorist salaries will continue
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Nov. 5, 2018

Official PA TV program "Topic of the Day"

Official PA TV host: “The Israeli Parliament’s decision will come into effect regarding deducting the salaries of the prisoners and Martyrs from the taxes. How are you responding to this matter, and what are your steps
against it?” …
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr: “The prisoners, the released [prisoners], and their families can rest assured - as [PA] President [Abbas] has said: Even if we have only a penny left it will be spent on them. They are like all of the [public] employees. In other words, they will not be affected. What will be affected of course is the PA’s budget, because the salaries are approximately 1 billion [Israeli] shekels a year that we pay.”
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Terrorist prisoners are “most precious thing” and “out of the question” to renounce them and stop salaries, says PLO official
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Nov. 2, 2018
Official PA TV program PLO Present and Future

Official PA TV host: "[PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] emphasized from the podium of the UN the subject of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded [and said] that the PA and PLO will not give up [on them]. The department- There is the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs [and Wounded] Institution, and you mentioned earlier that there will be a connection between you as the ministry (sic., department) for social affairs [and the PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution]. What is the plan regarding the care of the prisoners' families and the activity with the [PLO] Department for Social Affairs?"
Head of PLO Department for Social Affairs Bassam Al-Salehi: "First, there won’t be any consensus regarding President Abbas’ positions like the existing consensus on his positions for the families of the Martyrs and the wounded. This is an open and clear position that is not debatable, which was said behind closed doors, before the world, and at the UN. In other words, it is out of the question to renounce the most precious thing the Palestinian people holds, and that is the memory of its Martyrs, their families' rights, the role of their fighters in prison, the wounded, and so on. Therefore, the position on the matter is firm."

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Abbas emphasizes that the salaries to terrorists and families of Martyrs will not stop, and that “their rights must not be compromised”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 30, 2018
“The Palestinian [PLO] Central Council held its 30th session in Ramallah, in the presence of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas
The president emphasized that the salaries (rawatib) of our Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded are a red line and that their rights must not be compromised, and also that from its first stone the settlement [enterprise] is illegal and opposes international law.”

PLO official: “…the priority, as the President [Abbas] said, will be the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 30, 2018
Headline: “Abu Yusuf: The president is leading a battle against the enemies of the cause and the people”


“PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Liberation Front] Dr. Wasel Abu Yusuf said: … ‘The leadership stands determinedly before the pressures and extortion policies, and the stopping of the aid and money, while depending on the justice of the cause and the sacrifice of the Palestinian people. We will never relinquish our people’s rights, and we will never allow them to be harmed. We adhere to our loyalty to the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded, and to the suffering and sacrifice of the Palestinian people. Despite the threats and pressures, we will not agree to harming the rights of the Martyrs’ families and the rights of the prisoners - and this is a sacred principle as far as we are concerned; and the priority, as the President [Abbas] said, will be the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners.’”

Wasel Abu Yusuf also holds the role of head of the PLO Department of Popular Organizations.
PLO decides to cut economic and security ties and freeze recognition of Israel, reiterates "our right to resist the occupation in all manners," opposes Taylor Force Act
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 30, 2018
     “The Palestinian [PLO] Central Committee decided to end all of the commitments of the PLO and the PA to the agreements with the occupation authority ‘Israel,’ and primarily the freezing of the recognition of the State of Israel until [Israel] recognizes the State of Palestine in the borders of June 4, 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital.... The Central Council also decided in its statement yesterday evening [Oct. 29, 2018] after the conclusion of the 30th regular session in Ramallah... in the presence of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, on the ending of the security coordination in all of its forms, and economic disengagement, in light of the fact that the transition period, including the Paris Agreement, is no longer valid…
The Central Council emphasized its adherence to our right to resist the occupation in all manners ‎(i.e., term used by Palestinians, which also refers to the use of violence and terror)‎, in accordance with international law. It praised the resolve of the prisoners of freedom in the Israeli occupation’s prisons… The Council opposed the American extortion - the Taylor Force Act, and the Israeli government’s decision to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded from the Palestinian tax money, while blatantly violating international law...”

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Abbas: “The Martyrs and their families are sacred, [so are] the wounded and the prisoners. We must pay all of them”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Oct. 28, 2018

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas:
"I say this to everyone – the salaries of our Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded are a red line. They [Israel] try by all means, and exert pressure by all means, and they continue to exert: 'It cannot be that you will pay.' And they’ll even deduct our money that’s in their hands. They’ll deduct from it the amount that we pay to the Martyrs. We have said that this is a red line and we will not allow [it]. From 1965 until now, this matter is sacred to us. The Martyrs and their families are sacred, [and so are] the wounded and the prisoners. We must pay all of them. If one penny remains in our hands it is for them and not for the living."
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Director of Prisoners’ Commission promises to continue salaries to terrorists and their families
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 19, 2018
      "In addition, [Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri] Abu Bakr visited the Nablus and Tubas districts and met with representatives of institutions and released prisoners. He emphasized to them that the commitment to the prisoners and their families continues until they achieve their freedom, and that the leadership has many [options] in order to respond to Israel’s intent – with the support of the US – to harm the Palestinian tax money and deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from it (refers to Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.).”

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PLO committee “emphasized its pride in the legendary resolve of our brave prisoners… [and] will continue to take care of the families of the Martyrs, the prisoners, and the wounded,” despite the US and Israel
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 8, 2018
     “At its meeting yesterday [Oct. 7, 2018] in Ramallah, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, the [PLO] Executive Committee repeated its previous decisions and that which was said in President [Abbas’] speech before the [UN] General Assembly – in other words, resistance to the American administration being a partner or mediator in the peace process. It considered [the administration] part of the problem and not part of the solution… [The committee] emphasized its pride in the legendary resolve of our brave prisoners, who are continuing in their struggle and in their defiance towards the Israeli jailor in all areas. It also emphasized that it will continue to take care of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded, regardless of how much the American administration and the Israeli government exaggerate in the policy of blackmail and thuggery.”
Abbas at UN GA: "I pay tribute to our pure Martyrs and our heroic prisoners," defends PA salaries to terrorists` policy
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 29, 2018
Headline: "Experts: Mahmoud Abbas' support for the families of the Martyrs, the prisoners, and the wounded highlights that our struggle is national and not connected to terror"
       "From the UN podium [on Sept. 27, 2018], [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas again emphasized the commitment to continue supporting the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded, while rejecting all of the pressures and decisions of Israel, and with it the US...
Among the things Abbas said in his speech: 'I pay tribute to our pure Martyrs and our heroic prisoners. I say to all Palestinians: First, Israel considers [the Martyrs and prisoners] criminals. Why? Why does it [do so], when it has many thousands of people who have attacked everybody - and these are heroes? Why is the one who murdered [former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak] Rabin considered a hero (sic., Israel does not consider Yigal Amir a hero, he is serving a life sentence in prison -Ed.), and we - our people - are criminals whom it is forbidden to pay? I pay tribute to our heroic Martyrs and prisoners! And I say to everybody, we are standing before a time close to the dawn of freedom and independence. The darkness of the occupation will come to its end'...."
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Fatah youth movement makes statement in support of “providing full aid” to terrorist prisoners and families of martyrs, expresses “absolute rejection of all of the American administration’s attempts”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 28, 2018
Headline: “The [PA] president sent a handwritten letter to the young Palestinians through Fatah’s Shabiba”

“The secretariat of the Fatah Shabiba [Youth] Movement in the northern districts (i.e., the West Bank) emphasized in a press release that it is a national position and an obligation of every Palestinian who is committed to their basic principles and national rights to support the position of [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] in his national campaign against the racist American administration, the occupation state, and their aggression against the Palestinian people and its firm rights, and also in his decisive adherence to providing full aid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, the wounded, and the fighters, and in his absolute rejection of all of the American administration’s attempts, its crimes against Jerusalem – the capital of the future Palestinian state, and the bypassing of the [Palestinian refugees’] right of return through attempts to dry up UNRWA’s (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) sources of aid (refers to cutting of US aid to UNRWA; see note below –Ed.).”

US President Donald Trump's administration announced on Aug. 31, 2018 that it was immediately cutting all $360 million of annual American funding to UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East). Explaining the decision, the US State Department said, "The fundamental business model and fiscal practices that have marked UNRWA for years – tied to UNRWA’s endlessly and exponentially expanding community of entitled beneficiaries – is simply unsustainable and has been in crisis mode for many years. The United States will no longer commit further funding to this irredeemably flawed operation."

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Official PA news agency justifies “resistance,” which includes terror, and the PA’s payment of salaries to terrorists
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Sept. 24, 2018
Headline: “WAFA monitors the incitement and racism in the Israeli media outlets”

“...In the same [Israeli] newspaper [Maariv], an additional inciting article was published against the PA that was written by journalist Yasser Okbi, in which it said: ‘Terrorist [Khalil Jabarin] (i.e., murdered 1) will receive a sum of more than 6 million [Israeli] shekels from the PA from the time of committing the operation (i.e., terror attack) until he reaches the age of 75.’
‘Kuperwasser, former Director-General of the [Israel] Ministry of Strategic Affairs and Head of the Research Division of the [Israeli] Military Intelligence Directorate, explained: “According to law, the PA has a salary scale that they give to Palestinian prisoners who have committed acts of terror. Since the young person was caught, he will go to prison and receive this salary. And because he is young, he is to receive millions. These payments, approximately 7% of the PA budget and more than 20% of the international aid that is provided to it, serve to encourage terror, and they appear openly in its [the PA’s] budget.”’
The [WAFA] analysis of the article: The media and some of the Israeli politicians are exploiting the issue of paying a salary to the Palestinian prisoners in order to incite against the PA and accuse it of supporting ‘terror,’ according to their claim and the words they choose. For some of the Israelis, the aid to the families of those who carry out the operations and the fact that they are being supplied with an income that helps them provide for themselves constitutes encouragement of terror and not aid by the PA to Palestinians who are resisting the occupation on a daily basis.”

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Newly appointed PLO Commissioner of Prisoners’ Affairs: We “will continue to support the resolve of the prisoners,” Israel and the US trying to “present them as terrorists”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 21, 2018
Headline: "Abu Bakr: The Israeli and American pressures will not prevent us from continuing [to fulfill] our obligation"

"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr emphasized that the leadership, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, will continue to support the resolve of the prisoners and their families and will not succumb to the Israeli and American pressures calling to stop the Martyrs’ (Shahids) and prisoners' salaries (rawatib) and allowances (mukhassasat).
This was said during Abu Bakr’s meeting with families of Jerusalem prisoners and released prisoners at the municipality hall in the village of Al-Eizariya, in the presence of [Jerusalem] District Governor Adnan Ghaith…
Abu Bakr explained that the Israeli and American activity in the international arena is extensive and ongoing, and its goal is to create a stereotype of the Palestinian prisoners and to present them as terrorists. He noted that the US is attempting to use its international influence in order to realize the Israeli occupation’s goals.
Abu Bakr expressed his pride in the prisoners, who did not hesitate to sacrifice years of their lives for the freedom of the country and the people that has been suffering for seven decades from the worst occupation known to history."
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PLO official visits homes of terrorists, “emphasized the centrality of the interest in the cause of the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 15, 2018
Headline: “Abu Bakr met with the relatives of the Bethlehem district prisoners and congratulated journalist Dar Ali on his release”

“[PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr met with dozens of released prisoners and relatives of prisoners from the city [of Bethlehem] yesterday [Sept. 14, 2018] at the Bethlehem District Hall, in the presence of Deputy District Governor Muhammad Taha Abu Ulya and Fatah’s Bethlehem Branch Secretary Muhammad Al-Masri, and emphasized the centrality of the interest in the cause of the prisoners and their relatives at all levels, the aid to them, and knowing their needs…
Slightly before the meeting, Abu Bakr visited the Commission’s directorate in Bethlehem and examined its needs in order to improve its activity and services in an ongoing manner. He also visited the home of the oldest of the district’s prisoners, Musa Nawawreh (PMW was unable to confirm the details of his crimes –Ed.), who was sentenced to life…
In addition, the delegation visited the home of prisoners Mahmoud Abu Sorour and Nasser Abu Sorour (i.e., terrorists, participated in murder of 1) – who were sentenced to life and arrested before the Oslo Accords – at the Aida refugee camp.”

Mahmoud and Nasser Abu Sorour – Palestinian terrorists who participated in planning and carrying out the assassination of Israeli security agent Haim Nachmani on Jan. 3, 1993, in Jerusalem. Each is serving 1 life sentence.
 
 
Editorial in PA daily attacking Hamas states PA transfers 4 million shekels a month to Gaza in prisoners’ salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 2, 2018
Excerpt of editorial in the official PA daily

Headline: "Mahmoud Abbas 'imposes sanctions' in Gaza..."
      "What are the 'sanctions' of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas that Hamas claims that he is imposing on Gaza… What kind of sanctions are these that give and don’t take? President Mahmoud Abbas' 'sanctions' allow a government expenditure of billions on Gaza over the last 10 years, during which money was transferred to all of the sectors of government employment and services in Gaza: to health and education, water and electricity, salaries for military and civilian state employees and to members of the [PA] Parliament (Legislative Council)… and the salaries of the prisoners in the occupation's prisons and those who are released.... salaries of the prisoners and the released [prisoners]:4,446,000 shekels a month..."

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Head of PLO prisoners’ org says won’t give in to US and Israeli pressure on prisoners’ salaries, blesses prisoners, and visits mother of 6 terrorists
Source: Facebook page of the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, Aug. 19, 2018
Posted text: “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Maj. Gen. Qadri Abu Bakr emphasized that the Palestinian leadership – led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah – will make every effort for the prisoners, the released prisoners, and their families. During a ceremony honoring some released prisoners in the Jenin district, Abu Bakr emphasized… that we must deal with the challenges, and that we must not give in to the American and Israeli pressure on everything connected to the salaries (rawatib) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners... He also blessed the prisoners within the prisons and their families for the blessed Eid Al-Adha… On the same matter, Director of Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr visited Khansa of Palestine Um Yusuf Abu Hmeid (i.e., mother of 6 terrorists) from the Al-Amari refugee camp in Ramallah. She is the mother of a Martyr, 5 prisoners who were sentenced to life (sic., 4, the fifth is currently on trial), and an administrative [detainee].”

The image shows Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr sitting with Um Yusuf Abu Hmeid.


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PLO: terrorists and their families are “victims of the Israeli terror,” therefore paying them salaries “is a legal and national obligation”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 18, 2018
The following are several clauses from a review of the Palestinian Central Council’s decisions made Aug. 15-17, 2018 –Ed.

“The payment of the allowances (mukhassasat) to the families of the prisoners, the Martyrs (Shahids), and the wounded is a legal and national obligation to provide them with protection and dignified treatment; this is because they are victims of the Israeli terror, which has turned the Fourth Geneva Convention that protects civilians in a time of war into a convention that protects its criminal soldiers and the terrorist settlers (the Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply to Palestinian terrorists imprisoned for criminal acts, as it relates to civilians in wartime –Ed.)…
The [Palestinian] Central Council approved the recommendations that were submitted to it by the PLO Executive Committee to carry out the decisions of the Palestinian National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO) and to submit a comprehensive plan with a defined schedule that will include a comprehensive limitation of the political, financial, and security ties with the Israeli occupation authorities, including suspending recognition of the State of Israel and stopping the security coordination in all of its forms, until [Israel] recognizes a Palestinian state in the June 4, 1967 borders whose capital is East Jerusalem…
The Central Council confirmed the need to support the BDS boycott movement against Israel and strengthen it, to divest from [Israel], and to call on the world states to sanction Israel, particularly in light of the racist [Jewish] nation-state law (see note below –Ed.).”

Jewish Nation-State Law – law passed by the Israeli Parliament on July 19, 2018, which codifies in Israel's Basic Law that Israel is the home of the Jewish nation with Jerusalem its capital, and the Hebrew calendar its official calenda
PLO and PA officials express pride in Palestinian prisoners who carry out academic studies; Salaries to terrorists and their families “will not be harmed”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 17, 2018
Headline: “Completion of a course on international law and human rights for the prisoners of Nafha Prison”
       “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released [Prisoners’] Afairs Qadri Abu Bakr said that through all the years of the Palestinian struggle, the occupation has violated all of the international conventions and agreements that clearly discuss the rights of liberation movement prisoners, and the obligation of the state that holds them to provide them with all the necessities for sustenance and health and all of their humanitarian needs. Abu Bakr’s statements were made during the graduation ceremony of a course in international law and human rights for a group of 61 prisoners in the Nafha Prison… Abu Bakr expressed his pride in all the prisoners who have succeeded in turning the prisons into true schools, through the development of the study process with courses and classes and hundreds of them joining the Palestinian universities through distance learning…
District Governor Akram Al-Rajoub noted the ongoing achievements of the prisoners through the creation of new fields of victory every day that passes. He also added that regardless of how many pressures are exerted on the Palestinian leadership, the salaries (rawatib) of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and their families will not be harmed.”

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Abbas: We “will continue to support the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 17, 2018
Headline: “The [Palestinian] Central Council extended its meetings until today”
    “The [Palestinian] Central Council continued the meetings of its 29th session… at the [PA] presidential headquarters in Ramallah until today, Friday [Aug. 17, 2018], in order to discuss additional national issues.
The Central Council’s meetings began on Wednesday evening, in the presence of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas… The president emphasized that they will continue to support the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners, and will not allow passage of the settlement plan to build 20,000 new settlement units in occupied Jerusalem (refers to municipal construction plan announced Aug. 15, 2018, much of which is to be constructed in western Jerusalem –Ed.).”
PA Prime Minister emphasizes "the firm position of the leadership - led by Abbas and the government - and its commitment to pay the allowances of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners"
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Aug. 13, 2018
Headline: "Hamdallah: We are continuing to provide all types of support to the prisoners"
     "[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah met today (Monday) [Aug. 13, 2018] with a delegation from the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs led by Director of the Commission Qadri Abu Bakr in his office in Ramallah … The prime minister again emphasized the firm position of the leadership – led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the government – and its commitment to pay the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, despite the Israeli occupation’s decision and its threats to deduct these allowances from the Palestinian tax money (referring to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money). Hamdallah emphasized that despite the challenges, the provision of all types of support to the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs in its lofty and patriotic activities for our brave prisoners in the occupation's prisons is continuing. He also emphasized that the prisoners are the spearhead of the Palestinian struggle, and that they are the ones who have sacrificed the years of their lives for our just cause."
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PLO official: PLO is filing a complaint against Israel for “stealing” money from prisoners and Martyrs’ families
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 9, 2018
Headline: "Tamimi: We will not abandon our prisoners no matter how much the pressures increase"
       "PLO Executive Committee member and head of the organization’s Department of Human Rights and Civil Society Ahmed Tamimi emphasized that… the violations that Israel is committing against the prisoners – the latest of which was the theft of the prisoners and Martyrs' (Shahids') money (referring to the Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.) constitute a central part of the case that the PLO leadership is preparing in order to put Israel on trial for its crimes before the relevant international circles."

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Newly appointed Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs visits terrorist, criticizes Israel’s law to deduct tax money from the PA in the amount it pays terrorists and their families
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 6, 2018
Headline: “He was appointed to the role of director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ [Affairs] and visited the first prisoner of the revolution; Abu Bakr: The prisoners’ cause is essential and central to our people”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Maj. Gen. Qadri Abu Bakr visited first prisoner of the modern Palestinian revolution Mahmoud Bakr Hijazi (i.e., terrorist, participated in Fatah’s first terror attack in 1965) at his home in Ramallah...
Abu Bakr emphasized the importance of the prisoners’ cause as a central and basic cause of our Palestinian people and its long path of struggle. It should be noted that prisoner Hijazi is the first Palestinian prisoner of the Palestinian revolution. He was arrested on Jan. 17, 1965; he was in a group of self-sacrificing fighters (Fedayeen) who blew up a bridge that served Israeli military vehicles next to Beit Jibrin in the Hebron district (sic., attempted to blow up the Nehusha Water Institute in central Israel)...
Abu Bakr said that the challenges that the new managing committee is dealing with are great – and prime among them are the Israeli law to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners from the tax money that Israel collects for the State of Palestine (refers to Israeli law deducting terror salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.); and also the blatant Israeli attack on the legitimacy of the Palestinian struggle and the attempt to define it as criminal at the international level.
He added: ‘We will continue to cooperate with the members of the commission in order to defend the prisoners, their family members, and the released prisoners. This is because it is a national and humanitarian obligation that cannot be neglected.’”
Director of PLO Prisoners’ Commission: Prisoners' "rights" (i.e., salaries) will continue
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Aug. 5, 2018

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr on PA TV News:
“This is of course my message to all the prisoners and their families inside and outside [of Palestine], the released prisoners and those not released: There are regulations and laws and strict instructions from [PA] President [Abbas] to continue this path, and that the rights (i.e., salaries) of our detainees and prisoners won’t be harmed.”
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Official PA TV program puts a spotlight on PMW, showing posters depicting salaries paid to Palestinian terrorist prisoners by the PA
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Aug. 4, 2018
Official PA TV program Israeli Media in the Spotlight, on Israeli TV Channel 20 report on the activities of Israeli organizations – including PMW – to stop the money paid by the PA to terrorists and their families, which have led to changes in Israeli policy including the legislation of a law to deduct the terrorist salaries from the tax money Israel collects for the PA; see note below.
The Channel 20 report in Hebrew has been subtitled in Arabic.

Visual:
PMW fliers about the salaries paid to terrorists by the PA are shown.

Law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money - Israeli law stating that the PA payments to terrorists and the families of dead terrorists is a financial incentive to terror. The law instructs the state to deduct and freeze the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA. Should the PA stop these payments for a full year, the Israeli government would have the option of giving all or part of the frozen money to the PA. The law was enacted on July 2, 2018.
During the parliamentary vote, the law's sponsor Avi Dichter said: “The Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee received much help in its deliberations... from Palestinian Media Watch who provided us with authentic data that enabled productive and professional deliberations, nuances that are very difficult to achieve without precise data.” [Israeli Parliament website, July 2, 2018]
 
New PLO commissioner reiterates Abbas’ promise that last penny will go to the families of “Martyrs”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Aug. 4, 2018

Official PA TV News, on five hunger striking Palestinian prisoners held under administrative detention, hosting Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr


Official PA TV newsreader: “Tomorrow you will be officially appointed as [director] of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs... There are many challenges, such as laws that were recently legislated in the Israeli Parliament concerning the prisoners’ allowances and the American pressures on this issue...”
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Qadri Abu Bakr:
“The implementation of this is going to constitute a large problem for us. In other words, this is a financial war. However, both [PA] President [Abbas] and the Palestinian leadership have said that not a single penny can be touched. Even if only one shekel remains - we will give it to the families of Martyrs.”
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PA finance minister: "We pay a modest sum to the prisoners' families while they are in prison, and when they are released, we pay them a set sum as a salary for six months"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 3, 2018
      "[PA] Minister of Finance and Planning Shukri Bishara said… regarding the deduction of the prisoners and Martyrs' (Shahids) allowances (mukhassasat) from the tax money (referring to the Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.) that since the establishment of the PA there exists a legal obligation to pay these allowances, with the knowledge of the states that oversaw the signing of the Oslo Accords, among them the US, and in an arrangement with the Red Cross - and Israel knew about this. Now, the danger in the Israeli decision is not only in the sum that will be confiscated but also from a legal aspect, as it turns the payment to the prisoners' families into a criminal act, and this puts us in a problematic legal position that we must act against… He also said: 'We have a humanitarian and ethical plan, most of which relates to those who have served over 5 years in prison. We pay a modest sum to the prisoners' families while they are in prison, and when they are released, we pay them a set sum as a salary (rawatib) for six months, that ends the moment they begin to work.’"

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Criticism over Abbas appointing himself head of the Palestinian National Fund
Source: Al-Araby Al-Jadeed (UK Arab news website), Aug. 1, 2018
Headline: “Criticism of how Abbas took for himself the leadership of the Palestinian National Fund”
   “Strong criticism was heard from Palestinian factions and forces following announcements by PLO Executive Committee Secretary, (Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator) Saeb Erekat on the distribution of roles and departments among members of the [PLO] Executive Committee. The most noticeable criticism was directed at the decision of the head of the organization’s Executive Committee, [PA Chairman] Mahmoud Abbas, to take for himself the position of the one responsible for the Palestinian National Fund.... Clause 13 of the PLO regulations determines that ‘All members of the Executive Committee will be selected by the [Palestinian] National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO). The head of the Executive Committee will be selected by the committee. The committee will be selected from within the National Council.’ … Deputy Secretary-General of the Democratic Front [for the Liberation of Palestine] Qais Abd Al-Karim told [the UK Arab news website] Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that ‘This is the first time that the head of the PLO Executive Committee is taking for himself the role of head of the Palestinian National Fund.’ He added: ‘The National Council did not make a decision regarding the Palestinian National Fund, and neither did the [PLO] Central Council, and it is not within the authority of the Executive Committee and its chairman to determine who will be head of the National Fund.’”

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Palestinian organizations participate in “sit-in strike” to oppose Israeli law which deducts the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to terrorists and their families from the tax money Israel collects for the PA
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 25, 2018
Headline: “Sit-in strike opposite the UN headquarters in Ramallah as a sign of opposition to the theft of the allowances of the Martyrs and prisoners”

“Representatives of human rights organizations and additional organizations that deal with the prisoners’ affairs participated in a sit-in strike yesterday, Tuesday [July 24, 2018], which was called for by the national campaign to reject the law robbing the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) money (refers to Israeli law deducting terrorist salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.). The sit-in strike, which took place opposite the office of the [UN] High Commissioner for Human Rights in Ramallah, comes to express opposition to the theft of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money…
Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake demanded that the UN and its Secretary-General António Guterres bear their responsibility towards that which is happening to the Palestinian people, and oblige the occupation to implement the international conventions and agreements on the prisoners in its prisons.
He also emphasized the need for the UN to make decisions and take steps that will obligate the occupation state to respect the prisoners’ rights, and noted that the violations that it is committing are not limited to just the prisoners, but rather also include their families through the legislation of racist laws against them…
In addition he called for an extensive diplomatic, popular, and public campaign to support and aid the prisoners, and noted that the situation is liable to explode at any moment if Israel implements the deduction law.”
Abbas vows continued payments to terrorist prisoners who are “stars in the sky” and have “priority in everything”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 24, 2018

Official PA TV News, on PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ statements at a ceremony honoring released prisoners and families of dead terrorists


PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "By Allah, even if we have only a penny left it will only be spent on the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners, and only afterwards will it be spent on the rest of the people. This is a group that we appreciate and respect, and we consider it the one paving the way to Palestine’s independence for the future generations."
Official PA TV reporter: "With these words [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas welcomed a group of released prisoners and honored the leadership of the movement of prisoners, who sacrificed their souls and lives for the defense of their people and homeland. The president gave a number of Martyrs and prisoners the Jerusalem Medal in recognition of their role and their honorable national struggle..."
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "We view the Martyrs and prisoners as stars in the sky of the Palestinian people and the sky of the Palestinian people’s struggle, and they have priority in everything..."
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PLO official to UN: “the Israeli violations against the prisoners (i.e. law to deduct tax money in the amount PA pays terrorists)…are reaching the level of war crimes”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 20, 2018
Headline: "Karake: The occupation state is legitimizing the war crimes against the prisoners"

"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake gave his testimony before the UN committee to investigate the Israeli operations that are violating our people’s human rights, and this was during a meeting with it in the capital of Jordan, Amman, after the occupation authorities prevented it from entering the occupied territories.

Karake said in his testimony that the Israeli violations against the prisoners and detainees are reaching the level of war crimes and crimes against humanity, which are being committed under the cover of a series of racist and arbitrary legislations and laws that are in contradiction of human rights and international and humanitarian law…
Karake also said in his testimony: 'The Israeli goal behind these laws is to consider the struggle and resistance of the Palestinian people - including the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded - as terror, and to steal from them their legal status as legitimate fighters for freedom, dignity, and independence.'
He added: 'The law to confiscate Palestinian tax money under the pretext of the aid to the families of the prisoners, the Martyrs, and the wounded, that the Israeli Parliament ratified on July 3, 2018 (sic. July 2, 2018), comes as part of the attack against the legitimacy of the prisoners' national struggle against the occupation, and as part of the ongoing system of oppression that exists under the cover of the law against the prisoners in the prisons."
PA and Fatah officials at anti-US rally: “The PA will not abandon the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families, and will continue to pay their salaries”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 18, 2018
      “Thousands of citizens participated yesterday evening [July 17, 2018] in a rally to thwart ‘the deal of the century’ (refers to US President Donald Trump’s as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.) at Al-Shuhada Square (i.e., the Square of the Martyrs) in the center of Nablus…
Nablus District Governor Akram Al-Rajoub gave a speech on behalf of President Mahmoud Abbas, in which he said… that the president… says ‘no’ to America, ‘no’ to Trump – to whom [even] large states are unable to say ‘no’ – and ‘no’ to the deal of the century, which fell the moment the Palestinian people told it ‘no’… He emphasized that the PA will not abandon the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families, and will continue to pay their salaries (rawatib) and the money that they deserve… Fatah Movement Deputy Chairman [and Fatah Central Committee member] Mahmoud Al-Aloul said that the Palestinian people has turned the deal of the century into a slap on the cheek of the US, because [the Americans] do not understand that is impossible for the Palestinian people’s willpower to be broken… Al-Aloul also calmed the prisoners’ families and the Martyrs’ families, and said: ‘We will not abandon you. Your children have paid a heavy price for freedom, and your salaries will continue as they are.’”

Note: US President Donald Trump was burnt in effigy at this event.

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Official PA daily reports on “the national campaign” to oppose pressure from Israel, US and other bodies to cease paying salaries to terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 18, 2018
Headline: “The national campaign to resist the theft of the money of the prisoners, Martyr’s families, and wounded was launched”

“Dozens of residents in Ramallah participated in a mass procession yesterday [July 17, 2018], in order to launch the national campaign to resist the theft of the money and allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners, the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), and the wounded from the tax revenues (refers to Israeli law to deduct the amount the PA pays in terrorist salaries from taxes collected for the PA –Ed.). The procession was also held in opposition to what is called ‘the deal of the century’ (refers to US President Donald Trump’s as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.). Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake announced the launching of the campaign… which will expand and include the rest of the homeland’s districts and cities [and] capitals and cities around the world, in order to thwart the decision [to deduct the PA tax money].
He emphasized the Palestinian leadership’s opposition to the Israeli blackmail and to the theft of our people’s money by the extremist right-wing occupation government. Karake said that all of the racist laws that the occupation is approving indicate an apartheid regime…
He emphasized that this will not prevent our people from standing by those who have sacrificed for the Palestinian cause.”

Law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money - Israeli law stating that the PA payments to terrorists and the families of dead terrorists is a financial incentive to terror. The law instructs the state to deduct and freeze the amount of money the PA pays in salaries to imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA.
Fatah officials praise “those that excelled in the high school final exams,” saying knowledge is as important a weapon as a rifle, and emphasizing that the salaries to terrorists “are a red line that cannot be crossed”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 14, 2018
Headline: "Salfit: Fatah honors those that excelled in the high school final exams – Class of Khan Al-Ahmar"

"Under the name [Class of] Khan Al-Ahmar: Resolve and Victory (referring to illegal Bedouin buildings on Israeli state land; see note below –Ed.), the Fatah Movement’s Salfit branch two evenings ago [July 12, 2018] honored those that excelled in the high school final exams in the Salfit district…

Secretary of the Fatah Salfit branch Abd Al-Sattar Awwad welcomed those present and congratulated the students who succeeded, who are the knights of Palestine who are waving the flag of knowledge alongside the flag of resistance, as eternal Martyr (Shahid) [former PLO and PA Chairman] Yasser Arafat emphasized…
In his speech, Salfit District Governor Ibrahim Al-Balawi expressed joy over the students excelling in the exams… He emphasized the importance of knowledge, which is considered a weapon of equal value to a rifle against the occupation and the policy of dumbing-down that it is implementing against the Palestinian people…
Fatah Deputy Chairman [and Fatah Central Committee member] Mahmoud Al-Aloul conveyed [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas' congratulations to the students that succeeded and excelled…
In his speech, he reviewed the Palestinian political situation and talked about the leadership’s determination to release the prisoners from the occupation's prison. He emphasized that the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and Martyrs are a red line that cannot be crossed."

Khan Al-Ahmar is a site where Palestinian Bedouins have illegally erected dwellings and a school, mostly simple shacks, on land in Area C (i.e., land under full Israeli administration according to the Oslo Accords).

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Official PA daily announces “launch of a national campaign to annul the occupation’s decision to steal the money of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 13, 2018
Headline: “The launch of a national campaign to annul the occupation’s decision to steal the money of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners”

“Popular activists and national forces emphasized in a meeting the importance of unifying the efforts at all of the official and popular levels to annul the occupation’s decision to expropriate the tax money (refers to law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.), which is a clear act of robbery against our people’s rights and the rights of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded.
This meeting was held yesterday [July 12, 2018] at the call of the Supreme Council for Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs, and in the presence of representatives of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs, the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, and popular and civilian forces and activists. The participants emphasized the importance of joint work at the political and diplomatic level, and also that all of the Palestinians must bear responsibility for this issue, which the occupation government is attempting to use as an opening to pass the deal of the century (refers to US President Donald Trump’s as yet unpublished Middle East peace plan –Ed.). This is through political blackmail that is meant to extract an agreement on matters that were already rejected in the past by all of the Palestinian bodies and institutions.
In the meeting it was decided to launch a widespread local and international campaign to expose the occupation’s actions against the prisoners and the complex crime that the occupation is committing against them, against their relatives, and against the entire Palestinian people. This campaign will begin this coming Tuesday afternoon [July 17, 2018] at Martyr Yasser Arafat Square in the center of Ramallah..."
PA, PLO spokesmen reject Israel’s terror salaries law, salaries to prisoners, Martyrs’ families and wounded will continue
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 10, 2018
     “At a press conference dealing with the occupation’s decision to deduct the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat) from the tax money (see note below –Ed.) and the administrative prisoners’ strike, a number of [Palestinian] spokesmen emphasized the need to oppose the Israeli ‘law’ that violates all of the international agreements, and the need to support the administrative prisoners who are hunger striking. PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Liberation Front] Wasel Abu Yusuf said at the press conference that was held yesterday [July 8, 2018] in Ramallah at the initiative of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs, the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, and the factions of national activity: ‘The leadership, led by [PA] President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas, has emphasized its rejection of decisions that the Israeli government has made recently, and of the bills that the Israeli Parliament ratified regarding the deduction of amounts from our people’s money against what is paid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners.’
Abu Yusuf emphasized that they will continue to pay the allowances of the prisoners, the Martyrs’ families, and the wounded as usual, while pointing out the president’s statements at the Fatah Movement Central Council meeting yesterday (Sunday): ‘No one has the right to interfere in this matter; these are our Martyrs, our wounded, and our prisoners, and we will continue to pay them.’"
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Abbas vows the PA will continue paying salaries to prisoners
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 8, 2018

Official PA TV newsreader:
“[PA] President Mahmoud Abbas confirmed the continued payment of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families…"
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: “The second point is the decisions made by the government of Israel recently, made by the Israeli Parliament, regarding money and conduct towards us… we will act according to our interests in all that is connected- in other words, the money that Israel opposes paying to the Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded – we will not allow anyone to interfere with this. These are our Martyrs, these are our wounded, and our prisoners. We will continue to pay them and we began this in 1965.”
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PLO officials: “[PA] leadership will continue to pay the salaries of the prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 6, 2018
“PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi said: ‘The law to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and wounded from the tax money, which was passed by the Israeli Parliament (refers to law deducting terror salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.), is a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and the international conventions, as whoever holds prisoners is obligated to protect their lives and sustenance (the Fourth Geneva Convention relates to civilians in wartime, not terrorists imprisoned for criminal acts –Ed.). This law also contradicts the Paris Agreement, which Israel has violated and which gave it authority to hold direct contact with the world (sic., Israel has always had such authority; the Paris Agreement established economic relations between Israel and the PLO), and it abused this in order to turn us into consumers of Israeli goods.’ …
PLO Executive Committee Secretary, [Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator] Saeb Erekat said at a press conference held two days ago [July 4, 2018] that the leadership will continue to pay the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners, the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), and the wounded, despite the occupation authorities’ decision to deduct their allowances from the PA’s tax money.”
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PA spokesman: “Saying that the salaries and allowances of the prisoners and wounded are a prize and encouragement of terror is... the occupation’s interpretation that it uses as part of its despicable propaganda”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 6, 2018
    “The [PA] national unity government emphasized that the use of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and wounded as an excuse to wave the stick of financial and economic siege (referring to an Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from tax money collected for the PA; see note below -Ed.) in order to press for the passage of [US President Donald] Trump’s [Middle East peace] deal ‘will not advance or delay’ anything in this field.
Official [PA] Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud said: ‘Our heroic people, and at its head our leadership led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, has already declared its natural response to completely reject any cooperation with this American step being led by Trump, who takes pride in his blind bias in favor of the occupation and its arbitrary and dark policies.’ The spokesman emphasized that the call by any party to harm the allowances of the prisoners and wounded is an illogical call that expresses political ignorance regarding our people’s culture and our region, in light of the possible consequences of such improvised decisions and calls. The official spokesman also emphasized that the interpretation saying that the salaries (rawatib) and allowances of the prisoners and wounded are a prize and encouragement of terror is nothing but the occupation’s interpretation that it uses as part of its despicable propaganda and rumors.”
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PLO and Fatah official: Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money is “stealing”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 6, 2018
Headline: "Al-Ahmad demanded that the Arab states fulfill their commitments to the Al-Aqsa and Al-Quds foundations"
      "PLO Executive Committee member, Fatah Central Committee member, [and Fatah Commissioner of National Relations (i.e., between Hamas and Fatah)] Azzam Al-Ahmad demanded that the Arab states fulfill their commitments to the State of Palestine's budget and to the Al-Quds and Al-Aqsa foundations, so that [Palestine] can deal with the steps of punishment that the American government and Israel have imposed, the most recent being the Israeli Parliament's decision to steal the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners in Palestine (referring to Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below -Ed.."
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PA Prime Minister: “We will never abandon our responsibility to the prisoners… and we will continue to pay their salaries”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 6, 2018
Headline: “Hamdallah: We will not agree to changing our national rights to humanitarian or financial [rights]”

“During a speech that he gave yesterday [July 5, 2018] on behalf of His Honor [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas at the 60th annual conference of the Children of Ramallah Association at the Ramallah culture hall… [PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said:] ‘The Israeli Parliament has passed [a law] to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money as part of a new act of robbery of our people’s money and resources (refers to law deducting terror salaries from tax money collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.). We emphasize today on behalf of His Honor President Mahmoud Abbas that we will never abandon our responsibility to the prisoners and the relatives of the Martyrs and the wounded, and we will continue to pay their salaries (rawatib) and what they deserve, and this is the minimal obligation and loyalty to their sacrifice for the homeland’s freedom and honor.’”
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PLO chief negotiator: “The [PA] leadership will continue to pay the salaries of the prisoners, the Martyrs’ families, and the wounded”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 5, 2018
      “[Secretary of the PLO Executive Committee, Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator Saeb] Erekat said that the [Palestinian] leadership is preparing to sue Israel for its crimes against the unarmed demonstrators at the Marches of Return (refers to violent riots at the Gaza-Israel border; see note below –Ed.). [He said:] ‘We will also ask the International Criminal Court’s legal committee to launch an investigation of the Israeli crimes, including the settlements, according to the complaint that was submitted by the State of Palestine. The committee will monitor the topic of the law deducting the allowance (mukhassasat) money of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded’ (refers to Israeli law deducting terror salaries from tax money collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.).
Erekat explicitly stated that the leadership will continue to pay the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners, the Martyrs’ families, and the wounded, despite the occupation authorities’ decision to deduct their allowances from the [Palestinian] National Authority’s tax revenues. Erekat sees this as a national obligation and legal and moral commitment that is consistent with the international agreements and treaties regarding prisoners, which Israel is violating with this decision..."
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PA and Fatah official: Passage of Israeli terror salaries law is “robbery,” implementation of law will have “consequences: “All of the options will be open”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 5, 2018
    “Chairman of the General Authority for Civil Affairs [in the PA] and Fatah Movement Central Committee member Minister Hussein Al-Sheikh said that ‘The Israeli Parliament’s ratification of a law cutting that which is paid to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) from the Palestinian taxes is robbery and theft of our people’s money’ (refers to a law to deduct terror salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.).
Minister Al-Sheikh said in a press release yesterday [July 4, 2018] that ‘If the government of Israel implements this decision, this will have political, security, and financial consequences, and our people’s leadership will implement a series of decisions and steps in response to this. All of the options will be open in order to deal with this decision, which deviates from all of the signed agreements and protocols.’ Al-Sheikh emphasized that ‘The occupation authorities have no right to judge our people’s past and present and its national struggle for freedom and independence.’ He added: ‘There is contact with different concerned parties regionally and internationally, and this is in order to explain the danger involved in this type of decision and its consequences.’”
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Independent Council for Human Rights condemns passage of law deducting terror salaries from tax payments Israel transfers to the PA as violation of international law
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 5, 2018
    "The Independent Council for Human Rights condemned the ratification of the law to deduct the prisoners’ and Martyrs' (Shahids') allowances (mukhassasat) from the Palestinian tax money by the 'Israeli Parliament.' (refers to law to deduct terror salaries from taxes collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.). The council said in a statement yesterday [July 4, 2018] that 'The Israeli law constitutes an illegal blow to both the money owed to the Palestinians according to the agreements signed between the PLO and the occupation government, and a blow to the rights of these groups in the Palestinian society, and a blow to the right of the prisoners and their family members to live in dignity.' The council also emphasized that ‘There is no contradiction between the clauses of international law and international humanitarian law regarding giving support or salaries (rawatib) to the families of the detained, the prisoners, and the released prisoners - whose families completely depend on them financially in order to manage their lives and to allow them to live with dignity - and the obligation to give them the monetary allowances (mukhassasat) and their right to this.'"
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PLO prisoners’ commission condemns Australian decision to cut aid to the PA over terror salaries; Israel is “head of the terror in the region and in the entire world”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 4, 2018
Headline: “After Australia announced the stopping of the financial aid to the PA under the pretext of ‘salaries for prisoners’ - the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs: The world must not be dragged after Israel’s false stories and fraud”
     “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs said in a statement yesterday (Tuesday) [July 3, 2018] that the world’s states must not be dragged after Israel’s false stories and fraud, whose goal is to change the facts, or after its failed attempts to define the Palestinians' legitimate right to struggle as a crime, and particularly the attack against the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the wounded, and the prisoners (refers to Israeli law deducting terror salaries from tax money collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.).
The commission added: 'Israel is an occupation state, which is implementing the most despicable policy of abuse, oppression, and murder against the members of the Palestinian people, and it is the head of the terror in the region and in the entire world. The Australian position was a type of alignment with the view of the occupation and oppression state' (Australia announced it is ceasing direct aid to the PA on July 2, 2018, citing the PA’s terror salaries as the reason for this decision, and instead will transfer aid through the UN –Ed.)…"
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PA government condemns Israeli salaries law as “theft,” says leadership “will not abandon the prisoners and the families of the Martyrs”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 4, 2018
Headline: “The [PA] government: The Palestinian cause was and is the key to international security and peace”
    “The [PA] government condemned the ratification of ‘the law to deduct [the amount of] the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids) allowances (mukhassasat) from the Palestinian tax money’ (refers to Israeli law deducting terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below –Ed.). It emphasized that deducting the money from these revenues and legitimizing it are nothing but Israeli robbery, theft of Palestinian money, the open legitimization of the theft of our people’s money, and harms our national symbols and the symbols of the defense of freedom and dignity…
The government emphasized that the Palestinian leadership, headed by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, will not abandon the prisoners and the families of the Martyrs, who have paid with their years and their lives for their homeland.”
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PLO chief negotiator: Israeli law deducting terror salaries from tax payments is “robbery and theft”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 4, 2018
“Secretary of the PLO Executive Committee, [Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator] Saeb Erekat said to AFP: ‘This decision (referring to law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money collected by Israel; see note below –Ed.) is most dangerous, and nears the point of doing away with the PA. This is robbery and theft.’ He added: ‘Israel is stealing the land and money of the Palestinian people… Its decision to build new housing units in the settlements (possibly referring to Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Liberman’s May 2018 announcement that Israel plans to approve 3,900 housing units in 30 West Bank towns -Ed.) constitutes theft of the Palestinian people’s land.’ Erekat emphasized that all of this is a result of ‘the decisions of American President Donald Trump, which are encouraging Israel.’”
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PA foreign minister condemns Australian cut to aid to the PA over terror salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 4, 2018
       “The State of Palestine’s [PA] Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad Al-Malki said that the position of Australia, which has stopped the aid to the State of Palestine, constitutes a hostile position against the Palestinian people’s rights and [shows Australia is] being dragged after the extremist Israeli position. This is expressed in [Australia’s] use of the social security system, which is meant for the families of the Palestinian prisoners, as an excuse for its reallocation of its aid to Palestine (Australia announced on July 2, 2018, that it is ceasing direct aid to the PA; see note below –Ed.). In a statement, Al-Malki emphasized this evening (Tuesday) [July 3, 2018] that the regretful position of the present Australian government is not surprising, as it has consistently and embarrassingly failed to fulfill its obligations according to international law in everything related to the rights of the Palestinian people… Al-Malki emphasized that the present Australian government’s announcement is an additional step, through which this government is again proving that it is investing in the Israeli government’s war agenda…"

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Head of Prisoners’ Club condemns Israel salary law, prisoners are “resistance members and prisoners of war,” not terrorists; no one will harm “rights” of prisoners, Martyrs’ families and wounded
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 4, 2018
Headline: “Wall to wall condemnations of the approval of deduction of the Martyrs and prisoners’ allowances”
     “Chairman of the Palestinian [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares… explained that Israel’s attempts to steal the Palestinian people’s money (referring to Israeli law deducting terror salaries from tax money collected for the PA; see note below –Ed.)… are part of the actions to apply pressure in order to connect the Palestinian struggle to terror… Fares noted that the prisoners oppose all of the Israeli efforts to revoke their political status and their status as fighters, to revoke their legitimate right as resistance members and prisoners of war, and to label them as ‘terrorists’ and ‘criminals.’ Fares calmed the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), the prisoners, and the wounded that no one will harm their rights, as there is a consensus over them among the members of the Palestinian people. He emphasized that the implementation of this racist and discriminatory law will have grave consequences that will lead to an explosion in the face of the occupation.”
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Senior PLO official: Killing Israelis is not “terror”; it’s not “criminal”- it’s “legitimate”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 3, 2018

Official PA TV program 'The Content of the News'

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: "We reject these laws (i.e., to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money)... We continue to stand by the families of the prisoners (i.e., terrorists), the Martyrs (i.e., terrorists), and the wounded. This is part of the Palestinian national struggle... We reject labeling them ‘criminals’ and ‘terrorists.’ Israel wants to turn the entire struggle of the Palestinian people into ‘terrorism.’ It wants to remove the legitimacy of our struggle against the occupation."
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Abbas’ spokesman: Israeli salaries law is a "dangerous decision, " "a sort of declaration of war against the Palestinian people, its fighters, its prisoners, and also its Martyrs"
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, July 3, 2018
      “The Palestinian [PA] presidential office condemned the Israeli Parliament's decision to ratify the law to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money (referring to a law deducting terror salaries from PA tax money; see note below). Official Spokesman for the [PA] Presidential Office [and Fatah Central Committee member] Nabil Abu Rudeina said in a statement today (Tuesday) [July 3, 2018] that the presidential office adamantly objects to this dangerous decision, and that it thinks it harms the foundations of the relations from the time of the Oslo Accords and until now.
He added that if this law is implemented, it will lead to significant Palestinian decisions in order to deal with this dangerous decision, as this matter is considered one of the red lines that no one is allowed to harm or cross...”
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PA TV brings various responses to Israeli salaries law
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 3, 2018
Official PA TV News, responses to the Israeli law deducting terror salaries from the tax money collected for the PA

Official PA TV newsreader: “The [PA] presidential office condemned the Israeli Parliament’s decision to pass a law deducting the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money (see note below –Ed.), and emphasized that this is tantamount to a declaration of war against our people, its fighters, its prisoners, and its Martyrs. [PA] Presidential Office Spokesman [and Fatah Central Committee member] Nabil Abu Rudeina said that the presidential office is expressing its firm opposition to this dangerous decision, and considers it a blow to the foundations of the connection [between Israel and the PA] from the Oslo Agreements until now...”
Official PA Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud: “The [PA] government emphasized its refusal of any financial proposal or process to resolve the Palestinian problem at the expense of our national principles…”
Official PA TV reporter: “The government also condemned the Israeli Parliament’s passing of what is called ‘the law deducting the allowances of the prisoners and Martyrs from the tax money.’ It emphasized that the leadership will not abandon the prisoners and the families of the Martyrs, who sacrificed their souls and lives for their homeland.”
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PLO official: Prisoners had a “right” to kill – a “right to resist the occupation”; paying them is "sacred"
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 3, 2018

PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Spokesman Hassan Abd Rabbo:
"The legislation that passed the Israeli Parliament is racist legislation and is tantamount to organized state terror, which targets the Palestinian people’s values of struggle and morals, and attempts not only to steal the Palestinian people’s money, but also to target the history of our people’s struggle and its right to resist the occupation... The [Israeli] law defines the [Palestinian] national struggle as a crime, considers it terror, and considers the Palestinian people’s fighters and its Martyrs terrorists, criminals, and murderers... The issue of paying allowances to the families of the Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded is a sacred national obligation of the Palestinian people and the Palestinian leadership."
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Israeli Arab MP on PA TV: Israeli terror salaries law is “theft”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 3, 2018
Official PA TV News, on the recently passed Israeli law to deduct terrorist salaries from PA tax money

Official PA TV newsreader: “On the same subject, head of the Joint [Arab] List in the Israeli Parliament Ahmad Tibi said that the law to loot the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat) (Israeli law to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money -Ed.) is armed robbery and theft that the government of Israel is committing against our people’s rights.”

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PA daily op-ed: Imprisoned terrorists have a "right" to their salaries from the PA
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 2, 2018
Excerpt of an op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, regular columnist for the official PA daily

Headline: "The Prisoners' salaries are our obligation"
    "The salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners of freedom are a right that is guaranteed to them, and colonialist Israel, the US, and anyone else cannot under any circumstances be allowed to harm this right, which is guaranteed to them as freedom fighters according to the Palestinian national criteria and laws and international [ones]... The prisoners' cause is the cause of every Palestinian family, and it is necessarily a general cause of the [Palestinian] people and of its political leadership. None of their financial, social, or political rights can be relinquished. Their salaries are an obligation upon the people and the leadership."
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Head of PLO body for Martyrs’ families and prisoners: Israeli deduction of terror salaries from PA tax transfers is “illegal and constitutes an act of robbery, state terror,” payments are “welfare money” and will continue
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 29, 2018
Headline: “Al-Wazir: Deducting the allowances of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners is an act of robbery and terror”
      “Chairwoman of the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution Intisar Al-Wazir condemned the Israeli Parliament’s decision to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners from the PA’s tax money (sic., the Israeli Parliament Committee on Security and Foreign Affairs passed a bill to the Israeli Parliament for final voting), and considered this an inhumane act that harms the lives and livelihood of thousands of Palestinian families that have lost their provider and struggled and sacrificed the lives of their sons and their freedom in order to resist the occupation. Al-Wazir added that this action of deduction is illegal and constitutes an act of robbery, state terror, and a new way for the occupation to subjugate the Palestinians and eliminate their legal rights that are anchored in international law and norms.
Al-Wazir emphasized that the allowances of the Martyrs’ families, the wounded, and the prisoners are welfare money that are meant to strengthen the society and defend it from extremism and deviance... Al-Wazir calmed the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners regarding the continued payment of their allowances, and emphasized that the institutions working in this sector are continuing their work, and the occupation’s steps do not deter them from carrying out the humanitarian and social work...”

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PLO official vows to continue terrorist salaries
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 27, 2018

Official PA TV News, on an Israeli bill to deduct the amount the PA pays in terror salaries from the tax money Israel collects for the PA, telephone interview with Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake

Official PA TV host:
"Israel is looting the Palestinian people’s money, this time through laws that it legislated today..."
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: "This is clear theft and piracy in broad daylight... Israel strives not only to hold the money on the pretext of [PA] support for the families of the prisoners and the Martyrs - it wants to define the Palestinian people’s entire struggle as a 'crime' and those who have resisted the occupation as 'criminals.' This is the resistance of our Palestinian people, which is guaranteed by the international and humanitarian laws...
We will continue despite the pressures, threats, and blackmail.  We will continue to take care of and help the families of our prisoners and our Martyrs, we won't abandon them."
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PLO official: Israeli terror salaries law is “robbery and theft”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 27, 2018
Headline: “Khaled: Robbery and theft in the Israeli Parliament, the likes of which only exists in the American Congress”
      “PLO Executive Committee member Tayseer Khaled responded in a post on social media to the Israeli Parliament approving the deduction of the amount that the PA pays the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) from the Palestinian [PA] tax money (sic., the bill passed the Israeli Parliament Committee on Security and Foreign Affairs on June 27, 2018, prior to a general vote in the Israeli Parliament; see note below)…
He said that frankly this is robbery and theft, the likes of which is only that taking place in the American Congress and the Taylor Force Act (i.e., a law cutting almost all US aid to the PA as long as it pays terrorist salaries; see note below), which the American administration is using as a means of blackmail in order to achieve political concessions from the Palestinian side.”
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PLO Prisoners’ Commission condemns approval of Israeli prisoners’ salaries law, says “the Martyrs and prisoners are the symbol of the struggle, freedom fighters, and fighters of independence, and not murderers and terrorists”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 27, 2018
      “The [PA] Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs (sic., PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs) condemned the approval of the law to deduct the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) [families] from the PA tax money in a second and third reading in the Israeli Parliament (sic., the bill was approved by the Israeli Parliament Committee on Security and Foreign Affairs on June 27, 2018, prior to a general vote in the Israeli Parliament; see note below). It said that this law legitimizes the robbery and theft of the prisoners and Martyrs’ rights.
The ministry (sic.) demanded that the PA not submit to racist laws like these, whose goal is to prevent the Palestinian people’s legitimate resistance and its resolve before the occupation’s ongoing conceit and arrogance towards the prisoners, the Martyrs, and their families…
The ministry (sic.) explained that adopting the family members of the prisoners and Martyrs and taking care of their life needs is a national and moral obligation resting on the shoulders of the people and the leadership.
The ministry (sic.) added that it is impossible to abandon this obligation regardless of the price, and that the Martyrs and prisoners are the symbol of the struggle, freedom fighters, and fighters of independence, and not murderers and terrorists as the occupation defines them.”
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PA government: Israeli salaries law is “theft,” “the government will not abandon the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, June 27, 2018
Headline: “The [PA] government: The law to deduct the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ [families]”
     “The [PA] national unity government condemned the approval of what is called ‘the law to deduct the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) [families] from the Palestinian [PA] tax money’ by the Israeli Parliament (sic., the bill passed the Israeli Parliament Committee on Security and Foreign Affairs on June 27, 2018, prior to a general vote in the Israeli Parliament; see note below). Official [PA] Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud said that this ‘law’ openly and blatantly gives legitimacy to the theft of the Palestinian people’s money, and targets our national symbols and the symbols of the defense of freedom and honor… He added that the government will not abandon the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families, who have paid with their years and lives for the people, homeland, and all of humanity, because they struggled against the Israeli occupation that constitutes part of the injustice that harms people everywhere in the world.”
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PLO official denies PNF has stopped allocating money to PFLP terror organization
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 17, 2018
Headline: “Al-Ahmad: This is the truth about the allocation to the Popular Front [for the Liberation of Palestine] and Fatah’s meeting with the [PA] government”
     “PLO Executive Committee member [and Fatah Central Committee member] Azzam Al-Ahmad denied that the allocation from the Palestinian National Fund to any Palestinian organization, including the Popular Front [for the Liberation of Palestine] (PFLP), has been stopped.
In a telephone conversation with Al-Ahmad from Amman, he said: ‘There is no truth to the rumors that [PA] President [Mahmoud] Abbas or any other party has stopped the allocation to the PFLP. The truth is that the allocation to the PFLP is entering a bank account under the name of former [PLO] Executive Committee member and former Deputy Secretary-General [of the PFLP] Abd Al-Rahim Malouh, and comrade Malouh’s health condition does not allow him to carry out banking operations until the matter is arranged by the bank. That being said, this allocation has not been harmed.’”

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) has planned and carried out numerous terror attacks against Israeli civilians since its founding in 1967 and throughout the Palestinian terror campaign between 2000- 2005 (the Intifada).
PA Director of Prisoners’ Affairs: legislation cutting funding due to PA salaries to terrorists “will lead to an explosion of the situation”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, June 14, 2018
Headline: “Karake: The threat to the prisoners and the laws against their rights will blow up the situation in the prisons and outside of them”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake responded to the threat of Israeli Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan, who yesterday, Wednesday [June 13, 2018], called to take harsher steps against the prisoners and the conditions of their imprisonment (Erdan called for a committee to examine the privileges given to jailed terrorists –Ed.). Karake said that this threat, together with the legislation of the law (sic., committee approval of a bill) to expropriate the Palestinian tax money under the pretext of the aid to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) (refers to a bill to deduct terror salaries from tax money collected by Israel for the PA; see note below –Ed.), the rest of the laws that violate the international agreements and treaties, and the occupation government’s insistence on relating to the prisoners as terrorists devoid of their human rights and legal status, will lead to an explosion of the situation inside and outside the prisons. He also added that the extremist and racist occupation government will bear responsibility for all of the consequences that will occur as a result of the incitement against the prisoners and the violation of their rights…"

Bill to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money - A bill to deduct the amount of money the PA pays imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA, which passed the Israeli Parliament Committee on Security and Foreign Affairs unanimously on June 11, 2018, clearing the way for a second and third reading in Israeli Parliament.
PLO official attacks Israeli bill which would deduct money in the amount the PA pays terrorists from taxes Israel collects for the PA, says terrorist acts are internationally legitimate
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2018
Headline: “Karake: ‘Confiscating the [PA] tax money is theft under the protection of the law’”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released [Prisoners’] Affairs Issa Karake said: ‘The fact that the Israeli Parliament “Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee” approved the bill to confiscate the PA’s tax money in a second and third reading (sic., the committee approved the bill for a second and third reading in the Israeli Parliament; see note below –Ed.) on the pretext that [it serves as] support for the families of prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded, and to direct this money to the benefit of Israeli terrorists and settlers (sic., under the bill the deducted money would cover court ordered compensation for the PA to terror victims and projects to eliminate terror), is more despicable and immoral than war itself; it is skinning the Palestinian people alive, determining legislation that is nothing but “grinders of humans” under the protection of the law, looting, and stealing under the protection of the law.’
He said: ‘The goal that Israel and the US want to achieve through this blackmail and pressure on the PA, more than being financial, is meant to define the entire Palestinian national struggle as “terror” and a “crime.” [The bill] makes the Palestinian resistance to the occupation – which the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded represent – illegitimate and stripped of its legal and humanitarian foundations, and of the international legitimacy that permits every people subjected to occupation to resist it for its freedom and self-dignity.’

PA, PLO officials on Israeli prisoners’ salaries bill: “Deliberate theft… which is based on defining the resistance as a crime;” “There is no power in the world that is capable of obligating us to abandon our prisoners and our people’s heroic Martyrs”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 12, 2018
         “The occupation parliament (Israeli Parliament) [parentheses in source] Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee  yesterday [June 11, 2018] approved a bill to deduct the money that the PA pays to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families and to the prisoners (i.e., from the taxes Israel collects for the PA, see note below –Ed.)…
PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi condemned the Israeli approval. She said: ‘The organized and deliberate theft of the Palestinian people’s money reflects the occupation state’s method, which is based on defining the resistance as a crime and imposing collective punishments on the Palestinian people. These steps contradict international humanitarian law, and constitute additional proof that Israel is going too far in punishing all those who refuse its occupation and resist its steps.’ …
The [PA] national unity government emphasized that there is no power in the world that is capable of obligating us to abandon our prisoners and our people’s heroic Martyrs. Official [PA] Government Spokesman Yusuf Al-Mahmoud said: ‘Our Palestinian people and its leadership are loyal like no other to our prisoners and our people’s Martyrs, who have sacrificed the years of their lives and their souls so that the members of our people would live and for their homeland’s freedom and independence.”
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PA Prime Minister says salary payments to terrorist prisoners and families of “martyrs” are “the minimum obligation and expression of appreciation for their enormous sacrifice”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2018
Headline: “Hamdallah: We are committed to defending the rights of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners, regardless of the circumstances”

“[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said: ‘What we need while we are dealing with challenges is greater cohesion, connection, and compassion. Ramadan fast breaking feasts with the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) constitute one of the expressions of popular cohesion and loyalty to the power, resolve, and devotion of this important and precious sector in all of our hearts. We emphasize before them that we are committed to defending their rights, taking care of their matters, and providing them with dignified lives, regardless of the circumstances. This is the minimum obligation and expression of appreciation for their enormous sacrifice.’
Hamdallah said this during his participation in the Ramadan fast breaking feast that the Fatah Movement held for the families of the Martyrs and prisoners of Hebron.”
PA PM: “I am honored today to meet with the families of the Martyrs of freedom and human dignity… The rights of the Martyrs’ family members are protected under all conditions”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 26, 2018
Headline: “Hamdallah: The rights of the Martyrs’ family members are protected under all conditions and despite all of the challenges”
     “[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said: ‘We demand international unity that is as extensive as possible around His Honor [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ call to convene an international conference that will determine a multilateral international mechanism to sponsor the peace process…’ This was said during [Hamdallah's] speech at the feast breaking the fast for needy families of Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, which was organized by the Fatah Movement yesterday [May 25, 2018] in the town of Anabta, in the Tulkarem district… Hamdallah added: ‘I am honored today to meet with the families of the Martyrs of freedom and human dignity, each of whose name constitutes a symbol of uncompromising struggle for freedom and liberation. All of the glory to our righteous Martyrs; may Allah wrap their pure souls in His mercy.  Allow me to thank the Fatah Movement in Anabta and the national institutions in it for organizing this feast breaking the Ramadan fast… The least we can do to honor our Martyrs is to show interest in their family members and unite around them. Regarding this, I emphasize before all of you that the rights of the Martyrs’ family members are protected under all conditions and regardless of the challenges. This is not under any circumstances charity.’”

Senior Fatah official: “Our commitment to the cause of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners is firm and not up for bargaining”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 11, 2018
"Fatah Movement Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub said that our commitment to the cause of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners is firm and not up for bargaining.
Rajoub added yesterday [May 10, 2018] in a statement that this commitment, starting from the outbreak of the Palestinian revolution and until this day, will not succumb to pressures, threats, or bargaining. He also said that the commitment to this just cause is a national commitment deriving from our obligation and responsibility to our people and its cause, and that any attempt to harm this cause has not succeeded and will not succeed in the future. In addition, he emphasized the appreciation of our people and its leadership for this sector that has sacrificed for the cause and independence."

Jibril Rajoub also holds the positions of Head of the PLO Supreme Council for Sport and Youth Affairs, Chairman of the Palestinian Football Association (an independent NGO), Chairman of the Palestine Olympic Committee, and Chairman of the Palestinian Scout Association (PSA).
Families of imprisoned terrorist complain about proposed Israeli legislation that cuts amount PA pays to terrorists from tax money Israel passes to PA
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 9, 2018
Headline: "The prisoners' families condemned the law that was passed by the Israeli Parliament to deduct [from PA tax money] the allowances of the prisoners and Martyrs' families"
      "The families of the prisoners in Tulkarem condemned the fact that the Israeli Parliament yesterday [May 8, 2018] passed in a first reading a bill to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) that the PA pays to the prisoners and the Martyrs' (Shahids') families from the tax money that Israel transfers to the Palestinian side (see note below –Ed.)… The father of prisoner Osama Al-Ashqar (i.e., terrorist, responsible for murder of 8), sentenced to 8 life sentences and an additional 50 years, said that the occupation government’s attempts to harm the rights and savings of the prisoners contradicts all of the international norms and conventions. He also emphasized that the situation of the prisoners within the prisons is most worrying due to the steps of the Israeli Prison Service to tighten the noose around the prisoners. He said that he constantly asks for his son in the Gilboa Prison together with his wife, and that his son has complained about the occupation authorities forbidding bringing in winter and summer clothes, committing medical neglect, and preventing him from continuing his university studies and bringing books and newspapers into the prison."

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PA government condemns passage in first reading of Israeli bill that cuts equivalent amount of money from Israeli tax allowances to the PA that the PA pays to terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 9, 2018
Headline: "The [PA] government emphasized its full support for the results of the [Palestinian] National Council meeting"
       "During its weekly meeting that was held yesterday [May 8, 2018] in Ramallah, led by [PA Prime Minister] Rami Hamdallah… the [PA] government condemned the fact that the Israeli Parliament passed a bill (i.e., passed in a first reading; see note below) that allows the Israeli government to confiscate the Palestinian money and deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and Martyrs' (Shahids') families from the tax revenues, which are Palestinian money and not [given as] an act of kindness by Israel… The government emphasized: 'Any deduction from these revenues and its cloaking in a legal framework is nothing but an Israeli act of robbery and theft of Palestinian money.'"

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IDF soldier depicted as thief stealing money from the PA in cartoon posted on website of Fatah’s Information and Culture Commission
Source: Fatah's Information and Culture Commission website, May 8, 2018
Cartoon posted on the website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission

Headline: "The prisoners and Martyrs' allowances are a right!"

Text on cartoon: "The Israeli Parliament approved deducting the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners' allowances (mukhassasat) from the PA tax money"

The cartoon shows a soldier in uniform carrying a smoking assault rifle and a sack on his back with a dollar sign on it. The person's shadow is striped, symbolizing prison and has a ring of keys attached at the waist, symbolizing Israel as the jailor.

Bill to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money - A bill proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Defense that would deduct the amount of money the PA pays imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA, which was passed by the Israeli Parliament in a first reading on May 7, 2018. The bill would enable the deducted money to be used for infrastructure benefiting all West Bank residents, compensation awarded to terror victims in lawsuits against the PA or individual terrorists, and projects aimed at eliminating terror.
 
Op-ed in official PA daily defends PA salaries to terrorists, claiming they are not terrorists but “fighters for freedom, peace, and political justice” and that anyone who calls them terrorists (i.e. Israel and the US) are the real terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 8, 2018
Excerpt of op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, regular columnist for the official PA daily

Headline: “The tax money and prisoners’ salaries”

“Necessity requires analyzing the dangers of the [Israeli] law (a bill to deduct money used for terrorists’ salaries from PA tax revenues; see note below -Ed.)… whose goal is the theft of $300 million from the Palestinian tax money each year, under the pretext that they are ‘feeding terror’... The salaries of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families are one of the legitimate rights, as they are fighters for freedom, peace, and political justice. They are prisoners of war and not terrorists. On the contrary, whoever calls them by this description is the terrorist, and he is the one that is creating the dark terror throughout the world, and not just in the region. We are proud of them and defend them with all our strength and uncompromising determination, because they are symbols of the Palestinian nationalism and people of stature.”

Bill to deduct terror salaries from PA tax money - A bill proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Defense that would deduct the amount of money the PA pays imprisoned terrorists and families of "Martyrs" from the tax money Israel collects for the PA, which was passed by the Israeli Parliament in a first reading on May 7, 2018. The bill would enable the deducted money to be used for infrastructure benefiting all West Bank residents, compensation awarded to terror victims in lawsuits against the PA or individual terrorists, and projects aimed at eliminating terror.
PA, which pays salaries to imprisoned terrorists, participates in conference against terror funding called “No Money For Terrorism”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Apr. 26, 2018
Headline: “Palestine participated in a conference that was held in Paris under the title No Money for Terrorism”
     “The State of Palestine participated today, Thursday [April 26, 2018], in a ministerial conference against terror funding, which was held in the French capital Paris under the headline No Money for Terrorism.
Palestine was represented at the conference by [PA] Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad Al-Malki and Head of the [Palestinian] Central Bank Azzam Al-Shawa, accompanied by a Palestinian delegation comprised of the financial monitoring unit, [PA] General Intelligence, and the [PA] Attorney General’s Office. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ statement, the conference discussed the ways of strengthening the states’ activity against terror funding based on the actions that have been carried out since the adoption of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism in 1999, and Resolution [1373] that was published by the UN Security Council in 2001… The conference concluded with a speech by French President Emmanuel Macron, in which he emphasized the significance of continuing the international efforts and cooperation against terror funding. At the end of the conference, which lasted one day, the Paris plan regarding terror funding was adopted.”
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PLO official in Gaza on the PA’s payments of salaries to terrorists: “The Palestinian national leadership cannot give up on them and not pay salaries to these prisoners.”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 20, 2018
Director-General of the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs in the Gaza Strip Bassam Al-Majdalawi: “First, the leadership’s position has not changed and was always firm in defending the prisoners’ cause. As my friend [Mustafa Al-Maslamani] Abu Al-Adib said, for many years the Palestinian leadership has been dealing with the issue of [prisoner] exchange [deals] and defense of the prisoners’ cause. Its first and last concern has been to empty the prisons so that no prisoners will remain within these prisons. Indeed, there is a cruel attack by the US and the State of Israel by exerting pressure on the Palestinian [PA] government and on the political national leadership – particularly r egarding the payment of the prisoners and Martyrs’ allowances (mukhassasat). But we say – and the Palestinian leadership has said before us – that these prisoners and Martyrs are the backbone of the Palestinian state. It is impossible to give up on these soldiers who paid the greatest and most complete price in the Palestinian cause. It is impossible that the Palestinian leadership would give up on the members of its people, particularly as it is a law that exists in the world that a family cannot be left without a provider and cannot be left so it will suffer in society. Therefore, in addition to them being a political national cause who defended the Palestinian land and paid with their best years, there are prisoners who are still imprisoned such as Karim Younes and Maher Younes (i.e., terrorists, murdered 1), and many veteran prisoners. Today they have been in prison for 36 years. The Palestinian national leadership cannot give up on them and not pay salaries to these prisoners.”
150 prisoners “from the 1948 territories” (i.e., Arab-Israelis) serving sentences in Israeli prison
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 19, 2018
Headline: “150 prisoners from the 1948 territories are sitting in the occupation’s prisons”
    “One hundred and fifty prisoners from the 1948 territories (i.e., Israel) – including 14 veteran prisoners, 12 that are serving life sentences, and 20 with long sentences – are sitting in the occupation’s prisons.”
Fatah official on the PA’s payment of salaries to terrorists and families of “martyrs”: “The Martyrs are more precious than all of us together… the prisoners are our compasses”
Source: Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, Apr. 18, 2018
Headline: “Dr. Muhaisen: Our national unity is the rock on which all of the plots against our cause will be shattered”

“The Al-Quds magazine [of Fatah’s Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon] spoke with Fatah Movement Central Committee member, [Fatah] Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the Southern Districts (i.e., the Gaza Strip, sic., he holds this position in the West Bank), [and PLO Central Council member] Jamal Muhaisen…
[Question:] ‘“Israel” is continuing its war against the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and this time has announced its intention to deduct their salaries (rawatib) from the [PA] tax money (refers to a new Israeli bill; see note below –Ed.). What is your opinion on this matter?’
[Jamal Muhaisen:] ‘The Martyrs are more precious than all of us together, as they died defending the Arabness of the Palestinian land, and the prisoners are our compasses who sacrificed their freedom for the freedom of the Palestinian people and the Palestinian land. Both of them have sacrificed for our right and historical identity, and this is their right and our obligation. When we talk about how there were approximately a million Palestinian prisoners in the Zionist prisons, what this means is that the entire Palestinian people is forbidden from receiving any kind of salary. These Martyrs also died due to the crimes committed by the occupation soldiers without any reason or restrictions …
Our Martyrs and prisoners are Palestinian national symbols, and we will continue to pay their salaries to their families, even if we will need to deduct from everyone’s salaries, and it does not matter what this will cost us.’"


6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prison, including veteran prisoners
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 18, 2018
Headline: “The occupation has arrested over 1,900 civilians since the start of the year [2018]”
       “The [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club said in a report that it published yesterday [April 17, 2018] that… the occupation authorities have imprisoned approximately 6,500 Palestinians, including 350 children, 62 women – of whom 21 are mothers and eight are minors, and six members of the PA Parliament [Legislative Council]… The Prisoners’ Club added that among the prisoners are 48 who have served over 20 consecutive years, 25 who have served over 25 years, and 12 who have served over 30 years.”
At event honoring Marwan Barghouti, Fatah official honors terrorist Abu Jihad: “[He] was and will remain our example and a role model,” opposes US demands regarding prisoners' salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 16, 2018
      “The popular campaign to release leader Marwan Barghouti and the rest of the prisoners sitting in the occupation’s prison marked the 16th anniversary of Fatah Central Committee member Marwan Barghouti’s arrest yesterday [April 15, 2018] at a rally held at the Palace of Culture in Ramallah, with the participation of hundreds of members of our people.
Fatah Movement Deputy General Leader (i.e., Deputy Chairman) and [Fatah] Central Committee member Mahmoud Al-Aloul blessed prisoner Marwan Barghouti. He noted: ‘On the anniversary of Fatah Central Committee member Marwan Barghouti’s kidnapping, (i.e., terrorist who was arrested and imprisoned for orchestrating attacks in which 5 were murdered) we salute him and all the prisoners of freedom for their day – Prisoner’s Day that will take place in two days – since they are a symbol of our pride, and they are in the hearts of all our people.’ …
He added: ‘The anniversary of Marwan Barghouti’s kidnapping takes place at the same time as the anniversary of the death as a Martyr (Shahid) of leader Khalil Al-Wazir ‘Abu Jihad’ (i.e., terrorist, responsible for murder of 125)… Khalil Al-Wazir was and will remain our example and a role model… He emphasized that the leadership opposes all of the external pressures concerning the prisoners, which [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas emphasized: ‘If we will only be left with a few Dirhams (i.e., a currency in some Arab states), we will allocate them to the families of the prisoners as a sign of appreciation for their sacrifice.’"
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Fatah deputy chairman: Prisoners are "heroes and fighters." We will pay them “even if we’re only left with a few pennies"
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 16, 2018

Fatah Deputy Chairman and Fatah Central Committee member Mahmoud Al-Aloul:
"We are speaking about [imprisoned] heroes and fighters, about freedom fighters. We will continue to support them and struggle for their freedom, and we will refuse to bargain over this. We oppose the American Congress’ decisions on this matter. Even if we are left with only a few pennies, we will allocate them only to the families of the Martyrs and to the prisoners."
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In the audience:
Fatah Central Committee member Abbas Zaki
Fatah Central Committee member and PLO Central Council member Jamal Muhaisen
Israeli Arab Parliament Member Ahmad Tibi

“The American Congress’ decisions” possibly refers to the Taylor Force Act - a bill named after US citizen Taylor Force who was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist in Tel Aviv on March 8, 2016, which calls to cut almost all funding to the PA if it continues paying salaries to terrorists and allowances to families of "Martyrs." On March 23, 2018, the bill was approved by the American Congress and signed into law by US President Donald Trump.
PA television program celebrates release of terrorist prisoner who participated in murder of 1 Israeli, with footage of Abbas embracing him
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 10, 2018
Official PA TV program Giants of Endurance, on the celebrations on March 14, 2018, over the release of terrorist prisoner Rajai Haddad who participated in the murder of Gavriel Hirschberg; hosting Fatah Central Committee member, Fatah Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the West Bank, and PLO Central Council member Jamal Muhaisen who took part in the release celebrations

Visual:
Video is shown of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas embracing released terrorist prisoner Rajai Haddad during celebrations for his release at the PA headquarters in Ramallah on March 14, 2018.

Fatah Central Committee member, Fatah Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the West Bank, and PLO Central Council member Jamal Muhaisen: “[My participation in the celebration] was a kind of message to the occupation that the issue of the prisoners and issue of the Martyrs (Shahids) are a red line for us, because they are symbols of struggle in dealing with this colonialist invasion that is still weighing on us and defiling our holy sites… Certainly we are waiting for the day when the fascist occupation’s solitary confinement cells will be closed, and then the people will celebrate its freedom in the shade of its independent state whose capital is East Jerusalem, and the return of the refugees to the lands that were occupied in 1948 (i.e., Israel).”

Rajai Haddad – Fatah terrorist who stood lookout, notifying terrorist Ayman Sharbati when to shoot. Israeli civilian Gavriel Hirschberg was murdered and a second civilian was injured in the Old City of Jerusalem attack on Nov. 20, 1997. Haddad was sentenced to 20 years and after his release Mahmoud Abbas held a reception in his honor in the PA h
PA Justice Minister, representing PA PM, on US and Israeli demands that PA stop terrorists’ salaries: “We will not abandon the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners of freedom"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 10, 2018
Headline: “Abu Diyak: We will not bargain over our Martyrs’ blood and will not exchange our promise and loyalty to them for all the money in the world”
      “[PA] Minister of Justice Ali Abu Diyak said yesterday [April 9, 2018]: ‘We will not bargain over our Martyrs’ (Shahids') blood and will not exchange the promise and loyalty to the Martyrs for all the money in the world. We will remain committed to the promise to the Martyrs of freedom and to the victims of the Israeli terror crimes. We will not backtrack on the path of the struggle with all of the legitimate means until realizing our Martyrs’ dream and our people’s aspirations – freedom, independence, the end of the occupation, and the establishment of the independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem.’
This was said in his speech as the representative of His Honor [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah at the opening of the National Association of the Families of the Martyrs [of Palestine’s] fifth general conference.
He said: ‘We will not abandon the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners of freedom. The government, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, will continue to fulfill its national, moral, and human obligation towards the Martyrs’ families.'"

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PLO official accuses the US of waging a “calculated incitement campaign,” claiming that stopping payments to terrorists constitutes “an open call to physically eliminate” Abbas
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Mar. 29, 2018
Headline: "Erekat: The American administration and Israel are waging an incitement campaign against our people and its leadership"

"PLO Executive Committee Secretary, [Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator] Saeb Erekat condemned the calculated incitement campaign that the American administration and Israel – the occupying authority – are waging against our people and its leadership
He added: ‘The direct and personal attack against [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] and the incitement against him by [Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor] Liberman due to the payment of the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the Palestinian prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) constitutes incitement against the Palestinian national movement and an open call to physically eliminate the president.’
He noted that Palestine is paying the monetary price of the occupation and the price of it shirking its responsibility and obligation as the power holding [the prisoners] according to international law. He mentioned that articles 81 and 98 of the Fourth Geneva Convention obligate the occupying power to pay allowances (mukhassasat) to the prisoners, as that is part of its responsibility towards them, and to support the families they support if they do not have sufficient means to live on (sic., these articles refer to the rights of protected persons and internees, not those imprisoned for criminal acts –Ed.).
Erekat emphasized that the Palestinian people's struggle against the colonialist occupier is a historical and legal right of all peoples subjected to occupation, and emphasized that the Palestinian leadership will not abandon the prisoners, as this is a legal and moral obligation."
Abbas’ spokesman: US decisions, including decision to condition aid on cutting salaries to terrorists, are “a type of declaration of war on the Palestinian people”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 28, 2018
Headline: “Abu Rudeina: The decisions of Congress and the American administration regarding stopping the aid are a declaration of war on our people”
       “Official [PA] Presidential Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said that the recent American decisions, and particularly Congress’ decision that calls to stop the direct aid to the PA (i.e., the Taylor Force Act) and add $700 million for the benefit of the Israeli occupation army (refers to omnibus spending bill allocation for US-Israeli missile defense programs –Ed.)… are a type of declaration of war on the Palestinian people and support for the policy of the occupation and aggression."

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Fatah official: “Let them stop all of the aid to us, we will not sell the family of a prisoner or Martyr”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 28, 2018
         “[Fatah Central Committee member, Fatah Commissioner of National Relations, and Fatah Commissioner for Relations with Lebanon Azzam] Al-Ahmad said: ‘Our people’s struggle is not merchandise that is sold and bought, it is a legitimate struggle guaranteed by the international conventions for the peoples bowing under occupation.’ These statements were said as part of his response to the claim of Israeli Parliament representative [Nachman] Shai, who said during the meetings of the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s c ommittee on Middle East affairs that the PA is paying the aid money as salaries to the families of the Palestinian Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, and described them as terrorists. Al-Ahmad added: ‘Let them stop all of the aid to us, we will not sell the family of a prisoner or Martyr in exchange for this money – they fought in order to get rid of the occupation.’”
PA Ministry of Information: Taylor Force Act is “political blackmail”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 26, 2018
Headline: “The [PA] Ministry of Information: The signing of the [Taylor] Force [Act] turned Washington into a partner of the occupation”
      “The [PA] Ministry of Information said that US President Donald Trump’s signing of that which is called the ‘[Taylor] Force’ Act – which forbids the American Department of State from transferring aid to the PA and to the members of our people (sic., the law allows certain humanitarian aid to continue while stopping all other aid until the PA stops paying terror salaries) – constitutes a strengthening of the political blackmail, and a continuation of the hostility towards our people from Washington, its denial of our legitimate rights, and its rebellion against international law."

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Fatah movement opposes Taylor Force Act, Fatah official: “The White House [is] competing with the Israeli Parliament and the Israeli Cabinet in displaying hatred and racism”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 25, 2018
     "The Fatah Movement said in a statement that it 'is not at all surprised by the American Congress’ latest decision, which connects the American aid with stopping the financial aid to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) (refers to the Taylor Force Act, which was passed into law on March 23, 2018; see note below –Ed.).' The movement emphasized that our brave prisoners and heroic Martyrs fought for freedom and independence, and that the rights of their families are not up for bargaining or negotiation… Fatah Revolutionary Council member [and Fatah Spokesperson] Osama Al-Qawasmi said that Congress and the White House are competing with the Israeli Parliament and the Israeli Cabinet in displaying hatred and racism against the fighting and resolute Palestinian people."
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PLO delegate to US defends payments to terrorists, says “the Palestinian leadership…is committed to letting them live in dignity, and will not submit to financial extortion” of Taylor Force Act
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 25, 2018
      "Head of the PLO General Commission in the US Husam Zomlot said in response to the Taylor Force Act, which stops the aid to the PA because of its payments to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners, that the Palestinian leadership is committed to the rights of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners, is committed to letting them live in dignity, and will not submit to financial extortion. He emphasized that the Palestinian people’s legitimate rights are not for sale…
He said: 'The Taylor Force Act arises from political motives, and Congress is attempting to use it as a means of political pressure, especially given the efforts to pass what is called “the deal of the century” (refers to US President Donald Trump's as yet unpublished peace plan –Ed.), whose goal is to eliminate the Palestinian cause.'"
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Several PA and PLO officials attack Taylor Force Act and appointment of John Bolton, defend payments to terrorists: "New American thuggery against Palestine"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 24, 2018
Headline: "New American thuggery against Palestine"

"Palestinian opposition to the American blackmail: The Martyrs and prisoners are sacred symbols of freedom and struggle

The American administration is continuing its aggressive steps against Palestine: The American Congress has conditioned its aid to the PA on stopping payment of the Martyrs’ (Shahids) and prisoners' allowances (mukhassasat), while US President Donald Trump has announced the appointment of hardliner John Bolton – who has a long history of hostility towards the Palestinians – as his national security advisor."
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PA Ministry of Information attacks Taylor Force Act, says “the freedom Martyrs and our brave prisoners are not highway robbers or gang members, but rather one of the elements of the legitimate resistance to the occupation”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 24, 2018
     "The [PA] Ministry of Information said that the American Congress’ demand to stop paying the Martyrs’ (Shahids) and prisoners' allowances (mukhassasat) in return for the continuation of the aid to the institutions of the Palestinian state is a continuation of the political extortion, extremism, and support for the occupation.
It said that the decision proves that Washington and [US] President [Donald] Trump's administration are not just biased in favor of the occupation and the settlement enterprise, but have become a part of [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu's government, officially joined the extremism and racism, and ignored the fact that the American Constitution promotes freedom and justice. The ministry emphasized that the freedom Martyrs and our brave prisoners are not highway robbers or gang members, but rather one of the elements of the legitimate resistance to the occupation, which is supported by international law."
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PA Spokesman condemns Taylor Force Act, says “the Martyrs and prisoners are sacred symbols of freedom, struggle, protecting human dignity”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Mar. 23, 2018
     "Official Spokesman of the [PA] National Unity Government Yusuf Al-Mahmoud expressed the government's rejection and condemnations of Congress's conditioning the continuation of the American aid to the Palestinian state’s institutions on the Martyrs' (Shahids) and prisoners' allowances (mukhassasat) being stopped (refers to the Taylor Force Act, which was passed into law on March 23, 2018; see note below –Ed.).
Al-Mahmoud said in a statement on Friday [March 23, 2018]: 'The American Congress must demand to end the occupation, stop the suffering of the Palestinian Arab people, and threaten the occupation authorities that it will stop aiding them if they continue the occupation and settlement, as the occupation is the one causing the spilling of our people's blood and their being put in its prisons.'
The official spokesman continued: 'In the eyes of our people, our nation, and our cause, the Martyrs and prisoners are sacred symbols of freedom, struggle, protecting human dignity, and resistance to submission and humiliation. All of these titles are noble titles, and an anchored right of all humans, which cannot be bought or sold for any fortune in the world.'"
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Official PA TV news reports on PA spokesman condemning the Taylor Force Act, defending the PA government’s payments to terrorists
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Mar. 23, 2018
Official PA TV News, on Official Spokesman of the PA Government Yusuf Al-Mahmoud’s condemnation of the US Congress passing the Taylor Force Act on March 23, 2018

Official PA TV newsreader: “Official Spokesman of the [PA] National Unity Government Yusuf Al-Mahmoud expressed the government’s opposition and condemnation of the continued American aid to the State of Palestine’s institutions b eing conditioned on the allowances (mukhassasat) to the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners being stopped.
Al-Mahmoud emphasized that the American Congress should have demanded the end of the occupation and stopping of the suffering of the members of our people, and set as a condition before the occupation authorities the stopping of aid if they continue their occupation and settlement. Al-Mahmoud emphasized that the Martyrs and prisoners are sacred symbols of freedom and struggle, and that all of these titles are noble human titles and a right guaranteed for all people, and they will not be sold or bought for all the money in the world.”
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The Taylor Force Act - a bill named after US citizen Taylor Force who was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist in Tel Aviv on March 8, 2016, which calls to cut almost all funding to the PA if it continues paying salaries to terrorists and allowances to families of "Martyrs." On March 23, 2018, the bill was approved by the American Congress and signed into law by US President Donald Trump.
PLO Department for Negotiation Affairs releases report defending the PA’s payments to terrorist prisoners, claiming Israel should be the one paying them
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 9, 2018
Headline: “[PLO] Department for Negotiation Affairs report titled The Colonialist Occupation System and the Palestinian Prisoners”

“The [PLO] Department for Negotiation Affairs yesterday [March 8, 2018] published a document under the title The Colonialist Occupation System and the Palestinian Prisoners regarding the prisoners and that which concerns their salaries (rawatib) and the salaries of their families according to international law, in comparison to what Israel is doing.
The following are the main points of the report (PMW was unable to locate the full report –Ed.):

The law to deduct the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat, “law” refers to a new Israeli bill; see note below –Ed.) is a racist law that violates Israel’s obligations as the one holding the prisoners in everything regarding their allowances, which is anchored in articles 81 and 98 of the Fourth Geneva Convention that Israel is blatantly violating (sic., the Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply. Those articles explicitly refer to interned protected persons – not convicted terrorist prisoners; see note below).
Article 81 determines that the body that imprisons protected persons needs to sustain them and provide them with medical treatment, and that it must not deduct anything to cover these expenses from the prisoners’ allowances, their salaries, and payments to which they are entitled.
The state that is holding the prisoners must also sustain the people that they [the prisoners] provide for, if they do not have sufficient means of subsistence or are unable to sustain themselves.
Article 98 determines that the state that is holding the prisoners must provide them with allowances, as this is part of its responsibility towards them. 

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PLO Chief Negotiator says Israel is "shirking its obligations to pay the salaries" of Palestinian terrorist prisoners, and should "commit itself to paying the allowances of the prisoners"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 1, 2018
Headline: “The PLO and prisoners’ institutions demanded to cancel the racist legislation against the prisoners”

“The PLO and prisoners’ institutions demanded to cancel [Israel’s] racist legislation against the prisoners in the Israeli occupation’s prisons. This was during a meeting of PLO Executive Committee Secretary, [Fatah Central Committee member, and PLO Chief Negotiator] Saeb Erekat, Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake, and [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club President Qadura Fares…
Erekat noted that the [Israeli] law to deduct the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat, refers to an Israeli bill; see note below –Ed.) comes as part of an organized incitement campaign to present the Palestinian people’s struggle as a crime and to mislead world public opinion by marking our legal struggle against the occupation as terrorism.
He emphasized that Palestine has been paying the financial price of the occupation in light of [Israel] shirking its obligations to pay the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and the families that they provide for, and he mentioned Israel’s obligations as the one holding them [the prisoners], which also include financial obligations according to the Fourth Geneva Convention (sic., the Fourth Geneva Convention does not apply, see note below).
He said: ‘Israel is not only violating international law, but is also stealing and manipulating the prisoners’ money in favor of the occupation state through the extension of their term of imprisonment and the profits that it derives from what the prisoners pay in exchange for their food and their basic commodities for which the occupation state is obligated."

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PLO officials defend PA payments to terrorists, saying the PA will “defend their struggle in every way, and work for their release”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 28, 2018
Headline: “[PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs conference on the occupation’s terror and the racist laws against the prisoners”

“The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs held a conference in Ramallah yesterday afternoon [Feb. 27, 2018] on the topic of ‘Israeli terror and legislation of racist laws against the Palestinian prisoners in the occupation’s prisons’…
Fatah Movement Central Committee member, [Fatah Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the West Bank, and PLO Central Council member] Jamal Muhaisen, Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake, [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club Chairman Qadura Fares, and Arab Israeli Parliament Member Osama Sa’adi spoke at the conference…
Muhaisen said: ‘The Palestinian leadership, led by [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas], is placing the prisoners’ cause at the top of its priorities. The Palestinian leadership and people are proud of their prisoners’ movement. They will always support their rights, defend their struggle in every way, and work for their release and the emptying of the prisons.’
Karake emphasized that the goal that Israel is seeking to attain by recently legislating racist laws against the Palestinian prisoners – with the latest example of this being the bill to deduct great amounts of money from the PA’s tax revenues, at an amount equaling that which is paid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and to the prisoners (see note below –Ed.) - … is first and foremost to define the Palestinian struggle as a crime and denounce it as terror…

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Head of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs “proud” of financial rewards to and education of Palestinians imprisoned in Israel
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 26, 2018
Official PA TV program PLO Institutions, on the PLO Commission of Prisoners Affairs, hosting Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: “The [PLO] Commission [of Prisoners’ Affairs] has many programs and services that are given to the Palestinian prisoners – whether those who are in the prisons or those who are released. First, I can say that every Palestinian prisoner inside the prisons receives social aid through the Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, and that is important. It’s important, and I’ll quote the words of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas at the [PLO] Central Council conference, when he was asked or spoke about the pressure and bartering and the pressure from the US and Israel regarding the allowances (mukhassas) of the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded. He said: ‘Even until the last day of my life, we will not stop this support, it is important’… Therefore, the family of every Palestinian prisoner receives social aid, and we are proud of this and not ashamed of it, and we say this openly because it is our national, human, and moral obligation, and the obligation of the struggle. There is support for this from the Palestinian leadership and from the Palestinian government…

We have the curriculum. The right of the prisoner to register at a Palestinian university has been denied [by Israel], and we cover 50%-75% of the tuition for the Palestinian universities for the released prisoners. We also have a program connected to studies, The Guidance Program(possibly the intention here is matriculation –Ed.), for prisoners inside the Israeli occupation’s prisons, which is being run for the fourth consecutive year. The prisoners submit exams and we do the coordination activities with teaching committees inside the prisons…"
“It's our… moral obligation” to pay terrorist salaries, says director of PLO Commission of Prisoners. "We’re proud of this"
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 26, 2018

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake
: "I’ll quote [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas: ... 'Until the last day of my life, we won't stop this support. It's important' ... The family of every Palestinian prisoner receives social aid. We’re proud of this, not ashamed of it, and we say this openly, because it's our national, human, and moral obligation, and the obligation of the struggle. It is supported by the Palestinian leadership and by the Palestinian government."
[Official PA TV, PLO Institutions, Feb. 26, 2018]

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for a rebuttal of the claim that PA salaries to imprisoned terrorists are "social aid"
PLO official defends practice of paying salaries to terrorists and their families, saying "it is our right to celebrate them"
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 22, 2018
Official PA TV program Giants of Endurance, on released prisoners in the Tulkarem district, hosting Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake

Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake: “This people greatly appreciates the prisoners for being prisoners of freedom, and this is a political message and response to the attack that the occupation authorities are carrying out against the Palestinian prisoners through racist laws and legislation and aggression against the prisoners’ rights, with the latest of them being the bill connected to holding or stealing the Palestinian tax money on the pretext of aid to the families of the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded (see note below –Ed.) . We are meeting- it is our right to visit them, it is our right to celebrate them, it is our right to rejoice with them after the release so that we will tell the world that the prisoners’ cause is a central cause and a basic cause. These prisoners are prisoners of freedom and legitimate fighters for the right to self-determination. They are not terrorists and they are not criminals as the Israeli occupation authorities keep claiming. Martyrs have fallen inside the prisons; prisoners, sick people, wounded, and t hose suffering from very serious illnesses have ascended to Heaven. They are witness to how the prisons have become a place of sowing death and sowing oppression among the Palestinian people. They are witness to many thousands of prisoners who have been arrested on a daily basis, the phenomenon of arrest has become a daily phenomenon – every day there are arrests. People have gone out and entered such that a quarter of the Palestinian people have entered the Israeli occupation’s prisons.”

PA government condemns proposed Israeli legislation on terror salaries: Israel was established “on the basis of the theft of the Palestinian people’s land, property, money, books, heritage, and antiquities”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 21, 2018
Headline: “The [PA] government condemns the Israeli escalation against the Gaza Strip and the theft of Palestinian money”
    “The [PA] government condemned the approval of the racist law to deduct the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids) families from the Palestinian tax money in the Israeli Ministerial Committee [for Legislation] (see note below –Ed.). It emphasized that Israel, which was established on the basis of the theft of the Palestinian people’s land, property, money, books, heritage, and antiquities, is continuing with its actions with which it began 70 years ago.”

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PA, PLO officials: Proposed Israeli legislation cutting amount PA pays to terrorists from Israeli tax money transfers to the PA is “robbery;” Israel supports terror
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2018
     “The [PA] national unity government said that the approval, as it were, that was given by the Israeli Ministerial [Committee for Legislation] to a bill on deducting the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the Palestinian tax money and transferring them to settlers constitutes robbery and a scandalous theft of money (see note–Ed.)…
Official [PA] Police Spokesperson Yusuf Al-Mahmoud said that the occupation is the one that needs to be brought to account, and it is the one that is required to pay compensation to the members of our people and everyone in the region who has been harmed, because it is the main cause of every crisis and all damage, and it is the source of the dangers and tension… Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that the bill to deduct the prisoners’ allowances constitutes robbery and organized political terror… Karake said that the bill will not contribute to stability and peace in the region, but rather will increase the tension. He added that our occupied people is protected by the UN resolutions and the Geneva Convention, and is not subject to Israel’s racist and hostile laws. Karake revealed that the occupation government is funding the Jewish terrorist prisoners who murdered Palestinians, and supporting them financially, politically, and legally (sic., Israel provides no such benefits). He added that this is a state that encourages terror and creates terror in the region.”

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PA Min. of Information blasts Israeli legislation against PA terror salaries: We won't abandon "Martyrs and prisoners who have sacrificed their lives and their best years in resistance to the occupation”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 19, 2018
Headline: “[PA] Ministry of Information: The occupation government is a gang, our Martyrs and prisoners are the symbols of our freedom”
      “The [PA] Ministry of Information said that the fact that that which is called ‘the Ministerial Committee for Legislation’ in the occupation government approved deducting the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the tax revenues and transferring them to settlers (see note below –Ed.) is terror that is being activated by a gang that is not making do with extremism and racism, but rather is also stealing and robbing our money... The ministry said that the prisoners and Martyrs are one of the symbols of our freedom… He emphasized that our people loves life, praises freedom, and fights in order to restore its homeland and its honor, and that it will not abandon its Martyrs and prisoners who have sacrificed their lives and their best years in resistance to the occupation and in search for honor and a life in freedom.”

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PLO official: US pressures on PA include measures against salaries to terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 13, 2018
   “The [Palestinian] People’s Party (i.e., a PLO faction) held processions yesterday [Feb. 12, 2018] in the cities of Gaza and Khan Yunis for the 36th anniversary of its establishment. They finished in a rally before the UN headquarters in Gaza, in protest over the American-Israeli policy that targets the Palestinian rights, including the attempt to eliminate UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East)… During the rally, many speeches were made, among them PLO Executive Committee member and Director of the [PLO] Department of Refugee Affairs Zakariya Al-Agha praised the Palestinian resolve before the American pressures and extortion… Al-Agha talked about how the American pressures on the Palestinians have escalated recently, including the closure of the PLO offices in the capital Washington in November 2017, the stopping of the annual aid that the US gives to the PA in order to force it to stop paying financial aid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, and the large cut in the participation of the US in the UNRWA budget.”

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PLO Prisoners’ Commission director: Israel has “racist” laws against prisoners, the PA “refuses to renounce the prisoners, the wounded, and their families”
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Feb. 13, 2018
    “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… emphasized that Israel hopes to criminalize the national struggle through its racist laws against the prisoners, and emphasized the position of the leadership that refuses to renounce the prisoners, the wounded, and their families.”
PLO official: PA should sue Israel if it cuts equivalent amount of money from tax allowances to the PA that the PA pays to terrorists
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Feb. 11, 2018
Headline: "Karake: Steps of protest by the administrative prisoners in the middle of next month"
      "Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… said that the intention of the Israeli Ministerial Committee of Legislation to discuss a bill to steal the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners constitutes robbery and theft of the Palestinian people's money. He explained that the PA and the [PA] Ministry of Finance must submit a lawsuit against the Israeli government if it does indeed do this."

On Feb. 11, 2018, the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation was slated to review a bill proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Defense that would deduct the amount of money the PA pays imprisoned terrorists and families of “Martyrs” from the tax money Israel collects for the PA.
PLO official: “We will continue to support and aid the families of the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners… Israel is the largest terror state in the Middle East… our prisoners are prisoners of freedom”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 9, 2018
Headline: “Karake: The law deducting the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded is robbery and aggression against our people”
        “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake emphasized in a statement that: ‘We will not submit to the Israeli financial extortion and the pressures that it is exerting against our people through racist and unfair laws, the most recent of which was a bill to confiscate the Palestinian tax money due to the support for the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded (a bill to deduct PA salaries to terrorists from tax money collected by Israel for the PA; see note below –Ed.). We will continue to support and aid the families of the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners, the victims of the Israeli occupation and its ongoing crimes.’
He said that regardless of the amount of the PA’s financial resources, we will not abandon our prisoners, our Martyrs, and our wounded, and the Israeli laws do not obligate us and do not affect the continued social and financial aid to the families of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded.
Karake explained that what the occupation government is committing is financial robbery and open theft of the Palestinian people’s money and resources, which opposes international laws and norms..."

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Expert on PA TV: “Fascist” Israel wants to transfer “the salaries of those who carry out operations (i.e., terror attacks)“ to aid “the victims of what he calls ‘terror’”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 7, 2018
Official PA TV program Palestine This Morning, review of Israeli press with PA TV Israeli affairs expert Fayez Abbas

PA TV Israeli Affairs Expert Fayez Abbas:
“[Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor] Liberman’s bill, a bill that only a fascist Israeli mentality could think up: The salaries of those who carry out operations (i.e., terror attacks) – the prisoners, of course – will be transferred to a fund to aid the victims of what he calls ‘terror’ (see note below –Ed.). According to the bill, money in the amount that is paid to the prisoners, wounded, and families of the Martyrs (Shahids) will be deducted from the Palestinian tax income, and will be transferred to Israeli institutions. The amount reaches 1.2 billion shekels per year.”

On Feb. 11, 2018, the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation was slated to review a bill proposed by the Israeli Ministry of Defense that would deduct the amount of money the PA pays terrorists and their families from the tax money Israel collects for the PA. The bill would enable the deducted money to be used for infrastructure benefitting all West Bank residents, compensation awarded to terror victims in lawsuits against the PA or individual terrorists, and projects aimed at eliminating terror.
Former PA Minister of Prisoners Affairs admits in court that the PA tried to deceive donor countries by paying salaries to terrorists indirectly
Source: Jerusalem District Court protocol, Feb. 7, 2018
PMW Head of Legal Strategies Maurice Hirsch: “Does the Palestinian Authority pay the salaries to the prisoners from its own money, from its account?”

Former PA Minister of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Ashraf Al-Ajrami: “Correct.”

Maurice Hirsch: “Yes?”


Maurice Hirsch: “I looked at the 2017 budget of the Palestinian Authority and I didn’t see that; I saw a transfer to the PLO, because that’s what the Palestinian Authority announced in 2014 – that it no longer pays salaries to the prisoners. What is the identity of the body that pays the salaries? The Palestinian Authority from an official account of the Palestinian Authority, or another body?”

Ashraf Al-Ajrami: “Listen, that was until 2017, or 2016 actually. Because there were complaints from bodies, in fact from funders of the Palestinian Authority who did not want their money to go to the families of prisoners and the fallen. Therefore, the [Palestinian] Authority said that we will not pay money from the government’s budget, we will pay from the PLO, and then they brought the [PA] Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs to the Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs under the control of the PLO, and then the money moved from the Palestinian Authority to the PLO – the PLO pays, not the [Palestinian] Authority.”
Former PA Minister of Prisoners admits that fewer than 5 Palestinian prisoners are POWs, in contrast to PA claim that all imprisoned terrorists are internationally recognized POWs
Source: Jerusalem District Court protocol, Feb. 7, 2018
Excerpt of Jerusalem District Court protocol, civil suit 3367-09, Feb. 7, 2018

PMW Head of Legal Strategies Maurice Hirsch:
“Does the Palestinian Authority view the prisoners, the murderers (sic., the murderer prisoners) as prisoners of war? If they are soldiers and are captured by the other side that’s called a prisoner of war, no?”
Former PA Minister of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Ashraf Al-Ajrami: “Listen, that’s a definition from Geneva Convention Number 3. It defines what a prisoner of war is, or what that is- also Geneva Convention Number 4 from 1949. In the Palestinian Authority they say that the Palestinian prisoners are prisoners of war, but I was [the PA] minister [of prisoners’ affairs] and I know – I was also a prisoner myself – I know the difference between Convention Number 3 and Convention Number 4. Number 3 says that if you capture someone who has a uniform-”
Maurice Hirsch: “Just to clarify, that’s article 3 (sic., article 4 of the Third Geneva Convention, which defines prisoners of war).”
Jerusalem District Court Vice President Judge Moshe Drori: “The Third Convention is the Prisoners of War Convention, the Fourth Convention is during wartime. Sir, you are not saying something correct.”
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Proof PA Min. of Finance is responsible for terrorist salaries and not the PLO: Martyrs’ families turn to Abbas, Hamdallah and ministry
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Jan. 31, 2018
Headline: “Al-Nahal: What the Martyrs' families are receiving is only medical aid and university education”
     “Director of the Institution for Aid to the Families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and Wounded in the Gaza Strip (i.e., connected to the PLO Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution) Muhammad Al-Nahal said that what the families of the Martyrs and wounded of the 2014 war against the Gaza Strip are receiving is medical aid and university education, together with additional aid…
He said: ‘We hope that a budget will be allocated so that we will be able to pay these families what they are entitled to,’ and called on [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, Palestinian [PA] Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah, and Palestinian Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara to resolve this matter once and for all…
The families of the Martyrs demanded that their salaries (rawatib) and the money that they are entitled to be paid to them, in light of their difficult financial situation… They also emphasized that it is necessary to allocate an annual budget for the payment of their salaries in a monthly and organized manner.”
48 Palestinian prisoners have served over 20 years in Israeli prison
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 14, 2018
Headline: “48 prisoners have served over 20 years of imprisonment”
        “Head of the Research and Documentation Department of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Abd Al-Nasser Farwaneh gave an update that the list of ‘the veterans of the prisoners’ has risen to 48 Palestinian prisoners.
In a press statement yesterday [Jan. 13, 2018], Farwaneh said: ‘Among these prisoners there are 29 prisoners called “the veteran prisoners,” because they are the most veteran prisoners in the [Israeli] prisons and were arrested before the Oslo Accords [in 1993]… Among these there are 25 prisoners who have served over a quarter century, and they are called “the generals of patience.” Among them, there are 11 prisoners who have served over 30 years in the occupation’s prisons, and they are called “the iconic prisoners,” the most veteran of whom are Karim and Maher Younes (i.e., terrorists, murdered 1) who have been imprisoned for 36 years.’ … Farwaneh also noted that there are dozens of additional prisoners in the prisons who have served 20 and 25 years, and even more than 30 years inconsecutively, and they are the prisoners who were released in the ‘loyalty of the free people’ (Shalit) [parentheses in source] prisoner exchange deal in 2011 and were rearrested (see note below –Ed.).”

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Abbas vows the PA won't stop paying terrorist salaries
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Jan. 14, 2018

Official PA TV, excerpt of a speech given by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Jan. 14, 2018, at the PLO Central Council in Ramallah


PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: "There is something that the Americans are telling us to stop - the salaries of the Martyrs and the Martyrs' families. Of course we categorically reject this. We will not under any circumstances allow anyone to harm the families of the prisoners, the wounded, and the Martyrs. They are our children and they are our families. They honor us, and we will continue to pay them before the living."
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Abbas made this statement in response to the American demand that the PA stop paying salaries to imprisoned terrorists and the families of terrorists.
PLO official falsely accuses Israel of paying salaries to Jewish terrorists, as opposed to the PA that pays salaries to imprisoned Palestinian terrorists, who are "freedom prisoners and legitimate fighters"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 13, 2018
Headline: "Karake: What Israel pays to criminals and criminal prisoners exceeds what is paid to the occupation's victims"
    “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that the Israeli occupation government allots a large budget to aiding criminal prisoners that committed crimes of murder and assault against the Palestinian people and to their families, and to fund Jewish terror societies and organizations and organizations of extremist settlers, and officially supports terror and even creates it… Karake rejected the comparison between the Palestinian prisoners - who are freedom prisoners and legitimate fighters who struggled for the right of self-determination, according to that which is anchored in UN resolutions and international law – and the Jewish terrorist prisoners. He said that the occupation government has related to the Jewish terrorist prisoners, who were convicted in Israeli courts of acts of terror and aggression against Palestinians, with full forgiveness. Moreover, it has supported them, encouraged them, given them full financial, legal, and social aid, related to them as national heroes and symbols, and published decisions to ease their sentences and pardon them..."

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PA Ministry of Information: Taylor Force Act is “political blackmail and robbery”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 12, 2018
“The [PA] Ministry of Information… emphasized that the discussions in the American circles regarding what is called the ‘Taylor Force’ Act to deduct our prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat) from our tax money (sic., the Taylor Force Act calls to cut US aid to the PA until it stops paying terrorist salaries) constitutes political blackmail and robbery, which mixes with the lack of objectivity of American Comptroller General [Eugene] Louis Dodaro who is working against our schoolbooks and accusing us of incitement (sic., the result of Dodaro’s investigation has not yet been published; see note below).”

At the request of Senator James Risch, US Comptroller General Gene Dodaro launched an American investigation in January 2017 of UNRWA schoolbooks in the West Bank and Gaza Strip looking for terror incitement and Antisemitism. The results of the probe are expected in February or March 2018.
Fatah official relays that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas “will continue to pay the salaries of the Martyrs` families, even if [just] $100 remains in the PA`s coffers”
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Jan. 9, 2018
Official PA TV program Palestine This Morning, on Palestinian Martyrs' Day, hosting Secretary-General of The National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine Muhammad Sbeihat

Official PA TV host: "In everything regarding the latest developments, in other words, the political interference regarding the Martyrs' (Shahids') issue, pressure has been applied to the [PA] leadership, the latest being essentially the allowances of the Martyrs' families. Israel incited in this direction and the US also demanded and pressed in this direction to stop the allowances, claiming that those who carried out these operations (i.e., terror attacks) are terrorists – according to it [the US], of course - denying the Palestinian struggle. In this framework, how can this issue be highlighted on this day, especially the firm Palestinian stand regarding this?"

Secretary-General of The National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine Muhammad Sbeihat: "We actually met a number of weeks ago with [Fatah] Movement Deputy Chairman [and Fatah Central Committee member] brother Mahmoud Al-Aloul and discussed this topic with him. He explained to us that the position of [PA] President [Mahmoud] Abbas on this issue is stable, and [that Abbas] said during one of his meetings with an official American party who demanded that he stop paying the salaries of the Martyrs' (Shahids') families – that His Honor the President said to him that he will continue to pay the salaries of the Martyrs' families, even if [just] $100 remains in the PA's coffers."
PLO official defends the PA practice of paying salaries to terrorists, calling threats to deduct tax money in the amount of the salaries paid an act of “robbery and theft”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 9, 2018
“PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front] Ahmed Majdalani… explained to the official [PA] radio [station] The Voice of Palestine yesterday [Jan. 8, 2018], …in response to the Israeli threats to deduct part of the tax money on the grounds that it is paid as salaries (rawatib) to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, that this matter is unacceptable and contradicts the agreements that were signed and that will now be reexamined. He said that these threats are a new act of robbery and theft of the Palestinian people’s money. He also emphasized that the PA and the leadership have full freedom to do as they please with this tax money and to give it to whomever they please.”
6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons at the end of 2017
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 8, 2018
Headline: “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs summarized 2017”
       “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs published its annual report, which documents the occupation state’s arrests and violations, and its crimes against the male and female prisoners held in its prisons in 2017…
At the end of 2017 the number of prisoners reached 6,500 prisoners in the Israeli prisons, which are divided among approximately 22 prisons and detention centers… [The prisoners include] approximately 350 children, including nine minors; 58 young women and women; 22 journalists; [and] 450 administrative detainees… The great majority of the prisoners are from the West Bank, who constitute approximately 84.8%; approximately 10% are from Jerusalem, and 5.2% are from the Gaza Strip.
The veterans: 46 prisoners who have spent over 20 consecutive years since their arrest, including 23 prisoners who have served more than 25 years, 10 of whom have served over 30 years. The most veteran among them are prisoners Karim and Maher Younes (i.e., terrorist cousins who murdered an Israeli together), who have been imprisoned for the past 35 years. Among the 46 veteran prisoners, 29 have been imprisoned since before the Oslo Accords, and were supposed to be released as part of the fourth batch in March 2014 (see note below –Ed.).”

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Abbas’ Advisor justifies salaries to terrorists’ families on official PA TV after US recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 9, 2017
Official PA TV, special broadcast on US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and transfer the US embassy to Jerusalem, hosting PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Foreign Affairs and International Relations Nabil Shaath

Official PA TV host: “Dr. Nabil [Shaath], you have monitored the [Arab] efforts up to the moment the A rab foreign ministers’ convention was held. [What is] the significance of this meeting from your perspective in light of the American position that is biased towards the occupation state and violates the international laws and legitimacy?”


PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Foreign Affairs and International Relations Nabil Shaath: “[US President Donald] Trump attempted to press us by closing the Palestinian [PLO] embassy in Washington (see note below –Ed.). He attempted to press us by cutting $300 million from the budget allocated to Palestine on the claim that it equals what the Palestinians pay to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and families of the prisoners, as if it is a crime to pay the victims of the Israeli hostile acts and Israeli crimes [an amount] that is at least enough for the needs of their families. All of these measures [are intended] to pressure us. Will our [Arab] nation stand up and cancel this [US] pressure by actually presenting the material aid in place of [the money] the US has cut and is cutting from the money intended for us?”
Fatah Central Committee member says salaries and payments to terrorists and their families “cannot be neglected under any pressure”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 8, 2017
     “Fatah Movement Central Committee member, [Fatah Commissioner of National Relations (i.e., between Hamas and Fatah), and Fatah Commissioner for Relations with Lebanon] Azzam Al-Ahmad said that American President Donald Trump’s decision regarding Jerusalem is a type of kindling of a religious conflict and encouraging of terror and violence
Al-Ahmad referred to the fact that this American step comes at the same time as the decision published by Congress regarding reducing the amount of American aid to the PA (i.e., referring to the Taylor Force Act; see note below), in an attempt to apply pressure to stop the aid to the families of the courageous Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, and said: ‘The Martyrs and prisoners are equal in value to the sanctity of the Palestinian land, and taking care of and aiding them cannot be neglected under any pressure.”
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840 Palestinian prisoners are registered for academic studies at the Al-Quds Open University
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 4, 2017
Headline: “840 prisoners are registered at Al-Quds Open University – Karake and Shahin give the diploma to the family of prisoner Muhammad Zawahreh”
         “The family of prisoner Muhammad Zawahreh (see note below), who has been serving a life sentence since 2002… received the BA diploma in computer sciences that he successfully achieved during his studies within the prison. This was in the framework of the education program for prisoners, which Al-Quds Open University is supervising in coordination with the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs. The diploma was given to the family of prisoner Zawahreh by Head of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… Karake thanked [Al-Quds Open University President] Dr. Younes Amr and the Al-Quds Open University staff for the support they are giving to the prisoners so that they will complete their academic studies… He said that the academic diploma is a certificate of freedom on the path to liberation from the occupation’s prison, and that there are 840 prisoners in prison who are registered for studies at the Al-Quds Open University.”
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Muhammad Zawahreh – Palestinian serving a life sentence since 2002. PMW has been unable to confirm more details.
PA agrees to pay released prisoners $10 million per month to cover unpaid release grants; On Abbas’ orders, PA will continue to pay terrorists and their families’ salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 22, 2017
      “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs... explained that in light of the meetings that were scheduled in advance, in which Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara participated, …understandings were reached and it was agreed to resolve the problems and crises connected to the payment of the released prisoners’ release grants, which stemmed from an absence of financial means, and this is by paying these grants in monthly payments of $10 million...
Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara explained during the meeting that the [PA] government – on the orders and instructions of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah – is continuing to take care of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and it will not submit to any pressures or extortion because this is a national, moral, and human duty and a duty connected to the struggle. He noted: ‘The prisoners are victims of the occupation and its incessant crimes against the Palestinian people, and we will not abandon them despite all of the pressures that are exerted on [the government] in this matter.’"

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Released prisoners demand the PA Ministry of Finance pay them their “release grant”
Source: Al-Hadath, Palestinian news website, Nov. 20, 2017
       “The released prisoners demanded that the [PA] Ministry of Finance pay the release grant, or what is known as the ‘presidential grant,’ by next Monday, Nov. 27 [2017]. They threatened to come to the Ministry of Finance from all of the districts on that day if [the grant] is not paid. In a press release that reached [the Palestinian news website] Al-Hadath, the released prisoners said that next Monday is ‘the decisive day in rescuing our rights from the grasp of [PA Minister of Finance] Shukri Bishara,’ according to the notice. [...]
It should be noted that the released prisoners are accusing the Ministry of Finance of not paying a release grant to more than 6,200 Palestinian prisoners who have been released from the occupation’s prison since 2010, at a time when the Ministry of Finance is making an excuse for this due to financial hardship. It should be noted that on Monday a meeting will be held at the Ministry of Finance between Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake and Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara in order to discuss the issue.”

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PLO official: Taylor Force Act proves US is biased in Israel’s favor; “The allowances of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners are a red line, and they cannot be harmed”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 18, 2017
Headline: “Abu Yusuf: The allowances of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners are a red line and they cannot be harmed”
        “Secretary-General of the Palestinian Liberation Front and PLO Executive Committee member Wasel Abu Yusuf emphasized that the fact that the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the American House of Representatives passed the law stopping the financial aid to the PA if it pays allowances (mukhassasat) to prisoners (i. e., the Taylor Force Act, which passed the committee on Nov. 15, 2017) unequivocally proves that it is biased and is adopting the occupation’s positions. He also emphasized that the allowances of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners are a red line, and they cannot be harmed.”

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PA District Governor glorifies Martyrs in Abbas’ name, and says leadership “opposes all of the pressures whose goal is to harm the allowances of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 15, 2017
     “The National Association of the Families of the Martyrs (Shahids) [of Palestine] in Tulkarem held the branch’s preparatory conference, with the participation of District Governor of Tulkarem Issam Abu Bakr … At the beginning of the meeting, District Governor Abu Bakr conveyed to the Martyrs’ family members the blessings of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, who always emphasizes the status of this group from among our people, which has sacrificed its blood in order to reach freedom, independence, and the establishment of the independent Palestinian state whose capital is Jerusalem. District Governor Abu Bakr emphasized the leadership’s position – which President Mahmoud Abbas represents – which opposes all of the pressures whose goal is to harm the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners and to stop them. This is in order to protect this right, and out of loyalty to those who sacrificed their lives for the homeland, freedom, and liberation from the occupation.”
Prisoners of Palestine Research Center : 45 “veteran” prisoners have served over 20 years in prison
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Nov. 13, 2017
Headline: “An increase in the number of veteran prisoners to 45 prisoners”
      “The Prisoners of Palestine Research Center said that the number of veteran prisoners in the occupation’s prisons has risen to 45 prisoners…
The center’s communications spokesman, researcher Riyad Al-Ashqar, said… that the veteran prisoners are the ones who have served over 20 consecutive years behind bars, and among them are 22 prisoners who have served over a quarter century (25 years) [parentheses in source], and 10 who have served over 30 years.”
Director of Prisoners Affairs: Female Palestinian prisoners are suffering from “severe mistreatment,” “intentional medical neglect,” and “a lack of appropriate TV channels”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Oct. 25, 2017
    “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that 56 Palestinian female prisoners who are in Hasharon Prison and Damon Prison are suffering from severe mistreatment, and are being denied their most basic rights. He also explained that 10 female prisoner minors under the age of 18 are in the prisons.
Karake noted that the female prisoners are suffering from intentional medical neglect, the absence of schoolbooks and cultural books, the suffering of their families whose permits are ripped up during the visits, a lack of appropriate TV channels – particularly for the female prisoner minors, and also from a lack of the basic goods that the female prisoners need in the canteens and the exhaustion and humiliation during their transportation to the court.”
PLO official calls on institutions and media outlets to focus on “veteran” imprisoned terrorists and their “suffering”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 5, 2017
      “Director of the Studies and Documentation Unit in the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs and member of the Committee for Administering PA Affairs in the Gaza Strip Abd Al-Nasser Farwaneh said that Palestinian prisoner Muhammad Al-Tous has completed his 32nd year in the occupation’s prisons, and been forced to enter his 33rd consecutive year. He added: ‘Prisoner Muhammad Ahmed Abd Al-Tous (i.e., terrorist, involved in murder of 5), 62, a resident of Hebron, is one of the ‘veteran prisoners’ and is considered the third most veteran prisoner in the occupation’s prisons after prisoners Karim and Maher Younes (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1 with an accomplice). He is also one of nine prisoners that are serving more than 30 consecutive years of imprisonment…
Farwaneh called on all of the institutions acting in this area and the various media outlets to give the cause of the ‘veteran prisoners’ that were arrested before Oslo more attention and space, and to focus on their suffering and the suffering of their relatives, so that their cause will remain present and alive, and to apply pressure on Israel to release them and close this matter.”

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PLO official: Abbas has stated that “the allowances (to imprisoned Palestinian terrorists and their families) will not stop as long as the heart beats”
Source: Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, Oct. 3, 2017
         “Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake... mentioned the American and Zionist administrations’ attack now against the prisoners and their failed attempts to pressure the Palestinian leadership to stop the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and praised the position that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has taken against this extortion and his declaration that ‘the allowances will not stop as long as the heart beats.’ He explained that the main motive behind these acts of extortion by the occupation government is to present the Palestinian national struggle as a criminal matter.
Karake revealed that there are currently 6,000 prisoners in the occupation’s prisons, including prisoners who have served 35 years, such as Karim Younes (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1 with accomplice) and Nael Barghouti (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1 with accomplice), 19 who have served over a quarter century, and nine who have served over 20 years [and under 25 years] of imprisonment. He expressed his pride in these prisoners ‘who have sacrificed the years of their lives for the homeland’s freedom and dignity.’”

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Abbas: "I will not give up on this… the Martyrs' families [and prisoners] will continue to receive their full allowances"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 20, 2017
        "Six months have passed since the last interview of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas by [the London newspaper] Al-Quds Al-Arabi on the sidelines of the Arab Summit that was held at one of the Dead Sea resorts in Jordan last March [2017]....
[Q:] 'There was much talk about stopping the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) because of the incitement that Israel is carrying out and the pressure that it is applying on the Trump administration.'
[PA President Mahmoud Abbas:] 'Right, Israel is inciting the US to think that the prisoners and Martyrs are terrorists. They are fighters and members of our people... We give these allowances to the families of the Martyrs, and [the US and Israel can] call them whatever they want, but I call them Martyrs. [The US and Israel] said that this is support of terror. I said to them: “Let's establish a trilateral committee that will discuss the matter,” and Israel refused. I said to the Americans: “Let the two of us discuss the matter,” but this did not happen. I will not give up on this matter, and the Martyrs' families will continue to receive their full allowances.'
[Q:] 'And the prisoners?'
[PA President Mahmoud Abbas:] 'Of course, also the prisoners.'"

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Former PA Minister of Prisoners in Hebrew denies PA has policy of incitement, salaries for terrorists, or naming monuments after terrorists
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Sept. 15, 2017
This is an edited version of Al-Ajrami’s speech. It is only an excerpt, which Wattan, an independent Palestinian news agency, chose to publicize.

Former PA Minister of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Ashraf Al-Ajrami: “Regarding the knifings, and the people who stab, I want you to review what the security forces in Israel are saying. All of the [Palestinian] people who are participating in stabbings are completely against the Palestinian Authority. No one is responding to what is called [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas’ ‘incitement’ or I don’t know what…
Regarding the payments [of the prisoners’ salaries by the PA]... When I was the [PA] minister of prisoners’ affairs in 2007, I refused to implement the law, the law of payments. During my time, no one received a lot of money – [no one received] so much money, because I basically want – that what is important to the prisoners’ family is to live in dignity. In dignity, that [means] a little money…
It isn’t the Palestinian Authority, it is, say, a village or urban council here and there, they name [streets] and – it isn’t the Palestinian Authority, it is the municipalities that do it.”

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PLO official: Prisoners' and Martyrs' allowances will not be stopped
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Sept. 5, 2017
     "Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake participated today, Tuesday [Sept. 5, 2017], in a conference regarding the cause of the prisoners in the Israeli occupation's prisons, which the Fatah Movement held in the Martyrs' (Shahids') Hall in the Burj Al-Barajneh refugee camp [in Lebanon].
Karake praised [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ positions supporting the prisoners’ resolve and his rejection of all of the acts of extortion, and emphasized that the prisoners and Martyrs' allowances (mukhassasat ) will not be stopped."
PLO official: 6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 31, 2017
Headline: “During his visit with families of prisoners and released prisoners on the eve of Eid Al-Adha – Karake: 6,500 prisoners are sitting in the prisons, the [number of] arrests since the beginning of the year is unprecedented”
    “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that 6,500 prisoners are sitting in 24 prisons, bases, and detention stations of the occupation on the eve of the blessed Eid Al-Adha (i.e., Muslim “Sacrifice Feast” holiday)."
Fatah quotes Abbas: I will not stop the allowances of the prisoners, even if it costs me the presidency
Source: Official Fatah Facebook page, Aug. 26, 2017

Image and text posted on the official Fatah Facebook page

The image shows PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, with the Dome of the Rock and the minaret of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the background. In the upper right corner appears the Fatah logo that includes a grenade, crossed rifles, and the PA map of “Palestine” that presents all of Israel as “Palestine” together with the PA areas.

Posted text and text on image: “‘I will not stop the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and released prisoners’ families, even if it costs me my position and the presidency. I will pay them until my last day.’ - [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, President of the State of Palestine”
Abbas: I willl never stop salaries to prisoners and Martyrs' families
Source: Official Fatah Facebook page, Aug. 25, 2017
Text posted on the official Fatah Facebook page

Posted text: “When a resolute position meets political experience
Israeli Channel 1 said that His Honor [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] informed the American delegation, which he met with tonight [Aug. 25, 2017] in Ramallah, that he will not stop paying the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners until the last day of his life, and thus he rejected the American-Israeli demand on this matter.
On the other hand, the Arab papers mentioned the meeting in Ramallah and said that the president informed American President [Donald Trump’s] envoys that he is ready to cooperate with President Trump in order to reach a just and comprehensive peace based on the two-state solution on the June 4, 1967 borders.”
PLO official protests US and Israeli demand to cease PA salaries to terrorists and their families, the "victims of Israeli terror"
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Aug. 24, 2017
Headline: “Tayseer Khaled: The American activity is a waste of time and its sole purpose is to instill illusions”
      “In a post on social media, PLO Executive Committee member and Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine political bureau member Tayseer Khaled described the visit of the American delegation, which has been visiting the region in recent days, as a waste of time, and an attempt to mislead public opinion and instill illusions …
He continued: ‘As usual, the delegation submitted Israel’s conditions for renewing the negotiations, which are the same known arrogant and insolent conditions of [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu and his government's top officials, such as stopping the incitement and payment of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Palestinian people’s Martyrs (Shahids), wounded, and prisoners - victims of Israeli terror.’”
Hamas MPs to be given their salaries that were being held by the PA
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Aug. 15, 2017
Headline: “After the end of the crisis of the prisoners and released [prisoners’] salaries, the issue of the Hamas parliament members is on the way to being resolved”
    “Several issues and topics were raised in [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah’s meeting with a delegation of the Hamas Movement in the West Bank, which was held in his office yesterday [Aug. 14, 2017]. Hamas [PA] Parliament Member Abd Al-Jaber Fuqaha… noted that they spoke about the salaries of the parliament members that were stopped, and the delegation received promises to return the salaries, but without a specific time being determined for this. The [PA] Parliament members also obtained promises several days ago from Head of [PA General] Intelligence Majed Faraj to return the parliament members’ salaries, during the delegation’s meeting with [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas.”


Director of Prisoners' Affairs: Abbas decided to renew prisoners` salaries that had been previously cut
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, Aug. 14, 2017
Headline: “Karake: The [PA] president has decided to return the salaries of the released prisoners in the West Bank”
     “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released [Prisoners’] Affairs Issa Karake this evening, Monday [Aug. 14, 2017], emphasized that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has decided to return the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and released [prisoners] in the West Bank and of the prisoners in the Israeli prisons.
The released [prisoners] whose salaries were stopped and who waged a sit-in strike in the center of Ramallah in the West Bank announced an agreement today that guarantees the return of their salaries by the PA, after they were stopped for three consecutive months. The released [prisoners] said at a press conference held opposite the protest camp in the center of the city that ‘It was agreed to return the salaries of all of the released [prisoners] in the West Bank without exception, and to return the salaries of the prisoners in the prisons as a goodwill initiative.’
They emphasized that the PA gave them positive promises regarding dealing with the salaries of the released [prisoners] in the West Bank and others later on… It should be noted that the [PA] unity government stopped paying the salaries of 277 released prisoners from the West Bank and Gaza three months ago.”
Special communal housing for released prisoners to be established
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Aug. 13, 2017
Headline: "Head of the Engineers' Association: The establishment of dignified housing for prisoners is a national and ethical obligation"
    “Head of the Engineers' Association Majdi Al-Saleh said today [Aug. 13, 2017] that the efforts of the [PA-funded] Palestinian Prisoners' Club and the Association for Dignified Housing for Prisoners to establish special communal housing for the prisoners constitute a national and ethical effort, which all of the relevant parties need to support. This was said during a meeting between Head of the Engineers' Association Majdi Al-Saleh, Chairman of the Palestinian Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares, Head of the Association of Housing of Honor Dr. Khaled Alyan, and Secretary of the Association Saleh Hushiya… It should be noted that the Association for Dignified Housing for Prisoners is working to carry out a communal housing project in the Ramallah district."
Abbas and PLO condemn US senators over Taylor Force Act vote, calls US demand to cease prisoners salaries "an unacceptable act"
Source: Facebook page of the Fatah Movement’s Bethlehem Branch, Aug. 13, 2017
Text posted on the Facebook page of the Fatah Movement’s Bethlehem Branch

Posted text: “A statement from the PLO Executive Committee – Ramallah, Aug. 12, 2017
The PLO Executive Committee, led by [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas, met at the [PA’s] presidential headquarters and discussed the political developments…
The [PLO] Executive Committee condemned the legislators of the American Congress and their positions towards the Palestinian people… and sees the American Senate Committee on Foreign Relations’ approval of stopping American aid to the PA – if it does not stop the aid to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners – as an unacceptable act that will negatively affect everything that is connected to the Palestinians’ rights... [The Executive Committee] emphasized the rejection of this [American] extortion and the rejection of using the tool of financial aid to extract political concessions... The [PLO] Executive Committee sent a blessing of appreciation and pride to the freedom prisoners of war for their legendary stance, and emphasized that their release is at the top of its agenda.”
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PLO official: “The PA will not submit to any demands to stop supporting the Martyrs’ families and prisoners, because they are freedom fighters”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 5, 2017
Headline: “Majdalani: We will not submit to any demands to stop supporting the Martyrs’ families and prisoners”
      “PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front (PPSF)] Ahmed Majdalani said that the American Senate Committee on Foreign Relations’ approval of the law to stop the American aid to the PA is a step that the [Palestinian] leadership expected. He noted that [the leadership] has recently received great threats of stopping the financial aid and extortion over its political positions...
It should be noted that the American Senate committee on Thursday [Aug. 3, 2017] approved a bill, according to which financial aid of $300 million that the US provides to the PA each year will be stopped, unless it [the PA] stops paying sums of money ‘as a reward for crimes of violence,’ as the legislators described it. The Senate Committee on Foreign Relations voted by a majority of 17 in favor as opposed to four against on the bill that is known as the Taylor Force Act. This was after a Palestinian (i.e., terrorist Bashar Masalha) killed 29-year-old American [Taylor Force] by stabbing, when the latter visited Israel last year… The occupation police killed the attacker who stabbed Force, but his family (i.e., the killer’s) receives a monthly sum.”

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Abbas, Rajoub promise Hamas ex-prisoners that they will get their salaries that had been frozen
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Aug. 2, 2017
Headline: “Sources to Wattan: The [PA] president has issued instructions for resolving the issue of the prisoners and released prisoners whose salaries were stopped”
     “Knowledgeable sources told [the independent Palestinian news agency] Wattan that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has issued instructions to resolve the issue of the 277 prisoners and released prisoners whose salaries (rawatib) have been stopped for this the third consecutive month. The sources said that a delegation representing the prisoners and released prisoners whose salaries were stopped held long meetings today [Aug. 2, 2017] with the security authorities in Ramallah in order to reach a resolution of their issue…
Earlier this week Fatah Movement Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub met with the released prisoners at the [protest] tent and promised them to resolve the issue. Fatah Revolutionary Council Secretary Majed Al-Fatiani also met with the released prisoners and their families at the protest tent and promised them to invest efforts into ending their suffering.”

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PLO Prisoners’ Affairs Director: Terrorists are “legal resistance to occupiers and settlers”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 20, 2017
Headline: “Karake: The issue of the prisoners is a black box filled with the occupation’s crimes”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that the Palestinian leadership, led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, continues to protect the legal right of our prisoners to freedom, release, and the protection of their dignity and human rights, and that the prisoners’ issue is a basic principle regarding which it is not possible to negotiate or to succumb to the Israeli conditions and extortion …
He said that the issue of the prisoners is a black box full of the occupation state’s crimes and atrocities, and we will open this box and prosecute the occupiers who are attempting to steal from the Palestinians their humanity and the legality of their resistance to the occupiers and settlers.”
Hamas prisoners whose salaries were frozen by the PA have been restored
Source: YouTube channel of the independent Palestinian news agency Wattan, July 14, 2017
Video on the YouTube channel of the independent Palestinian news agency Wattan, on the renewal of salaries to Hamas prisoners whose salaries were stopped, hosting Chairman of the PA-funded Palestinian Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares and spokesman for the prisoners whose salaries were stopped Mansour Shamasneh.

Spokesman for the prisoners whose salaries were stopped Mansour Shamasneh: "The salaries of the released [Hamas] prisoners in the West Bank have been renewed - all of them, without exception. Secondly, the salaries of the [Hamas] prisoners in the occupation's prisons that were stopped have been renewed - all of them, without exception."
Chairman of the PA-funded Palestinian Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares: "The Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded, together with their families, need to live in dignity and pride, especially at a time when this fighting group is a target for attacks by the occupation and its allies."
PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs says 6,300 Palestinians currently imprisoned in Israel
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 12, 2017
Headline: “Human rights report: Israel arrested 388 civilians in June”

“Institutions dealing with prisoners affairs and human rights, the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, the Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, the Addameer Prisoners Support and Human Rights Association, and the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, published their monthly report yesterday [July 11, 2017]…
The number of Palestinian prisoners in the occupation’s prisons has reached approximately 6,300 prisoners, 57 of them female prisoners, 10 of whom are female minors, 300 children, and 486 administrative detainees, along with 11 PA Parliament (Legislative Council) members.”

Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights – Founded in Gaza in 1999, its stated goals are the promotion and protection of human rights in Palestine, and especially in the Gaza Strip. NGO Monitor has documented that the Al-Mezan Center is active in many campaigns against Israel, delegitimizes Israel’s right to exist, and is a signatory to the Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS which calls for an end to Israel’s “occupation,” and advocates Palestinians’ right of return to all of Israel.

Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association – A Palestinian civil organization based in Jerusalem and established in 1992 whose stated goals are the support of Palestinian “political prisoners” held in Israeli and Palestinian prisons. NGO Monitor has documented that Addameer is active in many campaigns against Israel, and demonizes Israel.

July 2017 poll: 62% of Palestinians want Abbas to resign, support for intifada drops
Source: Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR), July 5, 2017
"These are the results of the latest poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip between 29 June and 1 July 2017. This poll has been conducted in cooperation with the Konrad- Adenauer-Stiftung in Ramallah...
Total size of the sample is 1200 adults interviewed face to face in 120 randomly selected locations. Margin of error is 3%... [PMW note: The following are excerpts from the poll. Click the above link to read the entire poll]

(3) PA payments to Palestinian security prisoners in Israeli jails:
91% are opposed to the suspension of PA payments to Palestinian security prisoners in Israeli jails; only 7% support such measure.  46% believe that the PA will not stop making those payments to Palestinian security prisoners while 44% believe it will stop making them.

(6) Presidential and parliamentary elections:
62% of the public want president Abbas to resign while 31% want him to remain in office. Three months ago, 64% said they want Abbas to resign. Demand for Abbas’ resignation stands at 55% in the West Bank and 75% in the Gaza Strip. Three months ago demand for Abbas resignation stood at 61% in the West Bank and 70% in the Gaza Strip.

(8) The peace process:
In the absence of peace negotiations, 74% support joining more international organizations, 54% support non- violent popular resistance, 39% support a return to an armed intifada, and 44% support the dissolution of the Palestinian Authority. Three months ago, support for a return to an armed intifada stood at 51%."

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PA sends 6,145 civil servants in Gaza to early retirement, as part of its feud with Hamas
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), July 4, 2017
Headline: "The [PA] government decides to make 6,145 employees take an early pension in the southern districts"
      "The [PA] national unity government, in its weekly meeting today (Tuesday) [July 4, 2017], decided to make 6,145 employees in the southern districts (the Gaza Strip) [parentheses in source] take an early pension.  Official [PA] Government Spokesperson Yusuf Al-Mahmoud explained that the government emphasized that this step, the steps that preceded it, and every other step likely to be taken in this framework are temporary steps, [whose cancellation] depends on Hamas abandoning the rift [with Fatah]… The government emphasized that the Hamas Movement collects hundreds of millions of [Israeli] shekels a month and does not return them to the public coffers, while the [PA] government is allocating more than 450 million shekels a month for the southern districts."

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Released prisoners whose salary was stopped demonstrate at the PA Ministry of Finance
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, July 3, 2017
Headline: “Released prisoners whose salary payments were stopped: The [PA] minister of finance again did not bother to meet [with us]"
     "With empty hands – thus the released prisoners whose salary (rawatib) payments were stopped left the [PA] Ministry of Finance building in Ramallah, after [PA] Minister of Finance [and Minister of Planning Dr. Shukri Bishara] refused to meet with them for the second time in 24 hours, according to them. Released prisoner Ihsan Al-Safadi said: 'Minister of Finance Shukri Bishara was in the ministry building, but they told us he was busy and that there was no possibility of meeting him.' He noted that this was the second refusal.
He added: 'The ministry of finance accountant and the director of the salary branch came out to sit with us, and they informed us that our problem is political.'
The released prisoners whose salary payments were stopped are continuing a sit-in strike [that has continued] for 16 consecutive days in the center of Ramallah, in protest of the decision to stop their salary payments. They are demanding that the leadership give them their right, which is anchored in Palestinian law...
According to released prisoners, the [PA] government stopped paying the salaries of 277 prisoners and released prisoners from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip – one of the most prominent among them being Nael Barghouti (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1), who has sat in the prisons for 36 years of his life."

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Fatah representative in Gaza falsely accuses Israel of paying salaries to Israeli terrorists, while criticizing Israel’s demand that PA stop salaries to Palestinian terrorists
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, July 3, 2017
Official PA TV program I Call You

Spokesman of the Fatah Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs in Gaza Nashat Al-Wahidi: “They demand to stop the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat), the prisoners’ salaries (rawatib), the salaries or allowances of the Palestinian Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families, while they pay a monthly salary to Ami Popper who killed 7 Palestinian workers (sic., Popper is being allowed to work through a prisoner rehabilitation program; he is not paid by Israel for having murdered 7 Palestinians –Ed.) - a monthly salary that reaches his home, like it reaches the rest of the Israeli murderers (sic., there are only 200 prisoners on the rehabilitation work program, and they are not paid by Israel –Ed.), including the one that murdered [former Israeli Prime Minister] Yitzhak Rabin in 1995 (sic., Rabin’s assassin Yigal Amir is not being allowed to work -Ed.). This is the true face of the Israeli occupation.”

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Fatah official: Salaries to terrorists is "connected to the Palestinian historical narrative"
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, July 2, 2017
     "Regarding the salaries (rawatib) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, [Fatah Movement Central Committee member, Fatah Commissioner of Mobilization and Organization in the West Bank, and PLO Central Council member] Dr. [Jamal] Muhaisen emphasized that this is not a financial matter, but rather a matter that is connected to the Palestinian historical narrative, according to which the prisoners and Martyrs represent our Palestinian people’s struggle. He praised the position of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, who responded to the American administration: ‘Even if I will have to leave my position, I will not compromise on the salary of a Martyr or a prisoner, as I am the president of the entire Palestinian people, including the prisoners, the Martyrs, the injured, the expelled, and the uprooted.’”
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Head of PLO Prisoners’ Commission defends terrorist prisoners – not criminals and terrorists, Israel is “attacking” them by withholding taxes equivalent of salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 2, 2017
Headline: "Karake: An unprecedented Israeli legal attack against the prisoners' rights"

"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake warned against the consequences of the unprecedented legal and diplomatic attack that the Israeli occupation government is carrying out against the prisoners' rights…
Karake said that the occupation is attacking the prisoners in a different way than in the past, as it no longer is satisfied with harassing prisoners inside the prison by using means of oppression and harming their rights and dignity, but rather is also attempting to deny the prisoners their political and legal aspect as a cause of national liberation…
Karake mentioned the nature of the Israeli attack against the prisoners through arbitrary laws that the Israeli Parliament legislates, the widespread incitement against the prisoners, and considering them as criminals and terrorists…
Karake said these things during visits to families of prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and released prisoners in the Hebron, Bethlehem, and Ramallah districts for the blessed Eid Al-Fitr (i.e., Muslim holiday marking the end of Ramadan)…
The delegation visited [the families of] prisoners sitting in prison Nidal and Muhammad Abu Akr, Muhammad Zawahreh, Nasser Abu Sorour, Riyad Al-Amour, Shadi Shalaldeh, and Yusuf and Alaa Skafi (see notes below –Ed.)."

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Abbas vows never to stop salaries to terrorists: "Even if I will have to leave my position, I will not compromise on the salary of a Martyr or a prisoner"
Source: Official Fatah Facebook page, July 2, 2017
Image and text posted on the official Fatah Facebook page


Posted text:
“From the words of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas"
The image shows a picture of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas with the text: “‘Even if I will have to leave my position, I will not compromise on the salary (rawatib) of a Martyr (Shahid) or a prisoner, as I am the president of the entire Palestinian people, including the prisoners, the Martyrs, the injured, the expelled, and the uprooted.’
[PA] President Mahmoud Abbas.”
Text at bottom of image: “Information Office of the Fatah Movement Mobilization and Organization Commission”

The image also includes a picture of Yasser Arafat in the background and the Fatah logo at the bottom which includes a grenade, crossed rifles, and the PA map of “Palestine” that presents all of Israel as “Palestine” together with the PA areas.
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Fatah official: "We will not submit to the occupation's policies, whether they will include stopping the salaries of the prisoners and the Martyrs' families"
Source: Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, June 29, 2017
"In order to discuss the most prominent political events and analyze the current Palestinian arena, the Al-Quds monthly held the following interview with Fatah Movement Central Committee member [and Fatah Commissioner of NGOs] Dalal Salameh:

[Q:] 'What do you think about Israel's attempt to legislate a law that allows the deduction of the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and the Martyrs' (Shahids') families from the tax revenues that it collects [for the PA]?'
[Fatah Movement Central Committee member and Fatah Commissioner of NGOs Dalal Salameh:] 'It is one of the steps of escalation that the occupation is carrying out against the members of our people regarding taxes due to our adherence to our rights and our strong commitment to the fundamental Palestinian principles... a people that has sacrificed prisoners and Martyrs for the homeland will not agree to erase the history of its struggle and will not submit to pressures. Our way has not been strewn with roses along the path of our achievements, and [punishment] is the way of the occupation, as it always distorts our struggle, our history, and our right to our land. However, our struggle is included in the framework of international law and we will not submit to the occupation's policies, whether they will include stopping the salaries of the prisoners and the Martyrs' families, or a different type of escalation.'"

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Chairman of Prisoners’ Club: We never lied to donors about salaries to terrorists; money goes to “legitimate resistance”
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 24, 2017
Headline: “Qadura Fares: The salaries of the prisoners and Martyrs will not stop”

“Chairman of the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares said that the international pressures to stop the payments of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) are not something new and are the product of ongoing Israeli incitement.
He added: ‘We have always told the truth to the donor countries – that the donors’ money is used for the PA salaries, and we emphasize that the money is also used for political and civilian efforts against the occupation, the settlement, and the resolve against it [the occupation], also including, among other things, our legitimate resistance (‎term here refers to events that include violence against Israeli civilians such as rock-‎throwing, stabbings, and even shootings -Ed.).’
Fares emphasized that the topic of the prisoners and released prisoners’ salaries (rawatib) is an essential and ideological issue that touches the core of our life as a Palestinian people, and it is part of the direct contradiction between the Israeli occupation’s narrative and our narrative. He also noted that there is no [need for] concern regarding the issue of the salaries.
He continued: ‘No one in the PLO leadership can renounce this basic principle under any circumstances, because there is a clear and open consensus about not stopping the salaries, and therefore I am not concerned at all.’”
Fatah official states that the Palestinian leadership "will not submit to the American and Israeli pressures" regarding salaries to terrorists and their families
Source: Facebook page of Abbas Zaki, Fatah Central Committee member and Fatah Commissioner for Arab and China Relations, June 23, 2017
Text and pictures posted on the Facebook page of Fatah Central Committee member and Fatah Commissioner for Arab and China Relations Abbas Zaki

Posted text: "[Fatah Central Committee member and] Fatah Movement Commissioner for Arab and China Relations Abbas Zaki participated together with residents of the Al-Fawwar refugee camp [southwest of Hebron] in a reception for released prisoner Saleh Abu Rabi' who was released today [June 23, 2017] after 15 years in the occupation's prisons.
In a speech that he gave on behalf of the Palestinian leadership, Zaki emphasized that the prisoners’ issue is one of the top priorities of the Palestinian leadership, and that the leadership will not submit to the American and Israeli pressures in any attempt to harm the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners."

The pictures show Abbas Zaki on stage at the event, with large sign in the background.

Text on sign: "Reception for heroic prisoner Saleh Al-Din Abu Rabi'
One of the leaders of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades in the southern [West Bank]"
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Saleh Al-Din Abu Rabi' – an official of Fatah’s military wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades. He was released in June 2017 after 15 years’ imprisonment in Israel. PMW has been unable to verify the circumstances of his crime and imprisonment.

PLO official: Salaries to imprisoned terrorists and "Martyrs'" families will not stop
Source: PNN Palestine News Network (independent Palestinian news agency), June 22, 2017
      "Under the auspices of PLO Executive Committee member and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front (PPSF) Dr. Ahmed Majdalani, businessman Bashar Jaber organized a Ramadan fast breaking feast for the institutions of the orphans and families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners at the Grand Park Hotel tent in Ramallah...
Dr. Ahmed Majdalani said in a speech that he gave: 'At this event and on this blessed day, and among those who are more precious than all of us, the children of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, we emphasize before them - on the instructions of [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] - that we will always help and assist the members of our people and we will stand by them at all times. The talk taking place here and there about stopping the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and Martyrs is not true at all.'"
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Abbas' advisor: Salaries to "the families of the prisoners and Martyrs constitute social aid that the PA provides"
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 22, 2017
Headline: "Shaath: The prisoners and Martyrs' salaries constitute care for innocents who have been caused harm because of Israel"
      "Palestinian [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas' advisor [on Foreign Affairs and International Relations] Nabil Shaath said that the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) constitute social aid that the PA provides to the families. Shaath added in a speech at the Herzliya Conference for security [of the IDC Herzliya Institute for Policy and Strategy] near Tel Aviv on Thursday [June 21, 2017] that the salaries are a social obligation towards innocents that have been harmed as a result of the imprisonment or killing of their loved ones as a result of the military occupation.
He noted that the Israeli occupation authorities have arrested approximately a million Palestinians since [Israel’s] establishment in 1948, and added: 'One of every three Palestinian men has served a prison sentence in an Israeli prison - can an intelligent person claim that these million people are terrorists?' He added: 'Honestly, to describe all of our political prisoners as terrorists is racist rhetoric.'"

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Foreign Affairs and International Relations Nabil Shaath’s entire speech in English on behalf of Abbas can be seen
here.
PLO Prisoner Commissioner: Support for prisoners and Martyrs’ families is a constitutional obligation
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 21, 2017
Headline: “Karake: Taking care of the families of the prisoners, Martyrs, and injured is part of the Palestinian constitution”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that taking care of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, wounded, and disabled is anchored in clause 22 of the Palestinian basic laws, which have constituted the constitution of the Palestinian state since the establishment of the PA. This is so because according to the basic laws, the law needs to regulate the social and health insurance services and the disability and old age allowances, and to take care of the families of the Martyrs and prisoners as well as the wounded and disabled. This is an obligation regulated by law, and under its framework the PA is obligated to provide them with education services and medical and social insurance.
Karake explained that taking care of the families who were harmed by the occupation is one of the lawful, legal, and administrative components of the Palestinian political system, and based on this the [PA] Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs was established, which afterwards became the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs.”
Fatah official on terrorists' salaries: "We will not renounce the rights of the Martyrs, prisoners, and their families... because they are fighters for a just cause"
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 21, 2017
      “Fatah Movement Central Committee member [and Fatah Commissioner for Arab and China Relations] Abbas Zaki emphasized the adherence to the rights of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and their families, as they are the spearhead of the national project. In an interview with Radio Mawtini today, Wednesday [June 21, 2017], Zaki said: ‘We will not renounce the rights of the Martyrs, prisoners, and their families, and we will continue to adhere to their rights because they are fighters for a just cause.’’”

Click "full article" for more information
PA daily op-ed accuses Israel of "inciting" against the PA by demanding PA end prisoners` salaries and terror glorification
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 20, 2017
Excerpt of an op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, regular columnist for official PA daily 
     
“Whoever follows official Israeli politics and actions notices that the central elements in the extremist right-wing coalition, in partnership with the herds of settlers and the Israeli security/military establishment, are adopting a series of policies inciting against the Palestinian leadership... As for example, in the case of the two operations (i.e., two-pronged terror attack, see note below –Ed.) that were carried out in Jerusalem last Friday [June 16, 2017], the raising of the issue of the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) salaries (rawatib) due to them being considered one of the foundations of ‘terror’ (i.e., refers to an Israeli bill to deduct terrorists’ salaries from the taxes Israel collects for the PA), ... and the incitement against naming institutions and centers of the civilian society after Martyrs.”

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt

PLO official: Commission of Prisoners' Affairs will not be closed
Source: Al-Quds website, June 20, 2017
Headline: “Karake: There is no decision to dismantle the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs”
      “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake today [June 20, 2017] emphasized that he is continuing to work as usual at the commission and has not been told about any decision to dismantle the commission, as has been announced in the Israeli media outlets. He said that these are rumors that have no basis in truth.”
PLO official: "The issue of the prisoners’ salaries is not up for negotiations"
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 19, 2017
Headline: “Majdalani: The issue of the prisoners’ salaries is not up for discussion”
    “PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front] Ahmed Majdalani said that the American administration, through the visit of American Envoy Jason Greenblatt and American President [Donald Trump’s] Advisor on Palestine and Israel Jared Kushner, is striving to try to examine all of the obstacles that have stood in front of peace so as to outline a plan of action… Ahmed Majdalani noted that [Israeli] occupation Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is trying to raise secondary issues and flood the American side with requests and preconditions before entering any political process, and this is in order to prevent the American administration from implementing the decisions of the international bodies. Majdalani emphasized that the issue of the prisoners’ salaries (rawatib) is not up for negotiations, and it is unacceptable to turn it into a precondition for a political process, as it is a political, national, and moral issue.”
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PLO official: Body in charge of prisoners` salaries won't be merged with PA ministry
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 18, 2017
Headline: "Karake: We were not informed of the closure of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs"
       "Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake denied knowing about the intention of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas to close the commission and merge it with one of the main branches or offices of the [PA] Ministry of Interior.
Karake said to [the independent Palestinian news] agency Ma'an: 'We were not informed about the intention of President Mahmoud Abbas and the leadership to freeze the activity of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs.'
The [Hamas] Al-Risalah Net website noted that according to Palestinian sources, which it described as 'reliable,' the president is inclined to close the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs and merge it with one of the main branches or offices of the [PA] Ministry of Interior in the occupied West Bank."
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PA PM: In Abbas' name, salutes families of "Martyrs" and emphasizes continued support from the PA
Source: Al-Ayyam, June 17, 2017
Published in Al-Ayyam, June 17, 2017 and in official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 16, 2017   
Headline
: “Hamdallah: The rights of the Martyrs’ families are protected”
   "[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said: 'On behalf of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and our Palestinian people, I salute all of the Martyrs' (Shahids') families, and congratulate them in the [Muslim fasting] month of Ramadan. I emphasize to them that their rights are protected, and we will continue our diligent work with the relevant PLO institutions to fulfill our basic, humanitarian, and national obligations towards them.' (The official PA daily only printed the text above, the following text only appeared in Al-Ayyam -Ed.)
His statements were made two days ago [June 15, 2017] during the central meal to end the fast for the Martyrs' families in Nablus... in the presence of Nablus Mayor Adli Ya'ish and Secretary of the National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine Muhammad Sbeihat ... Hamdallah added: 'With great pride I again meet with the family members of the Martyrs of Palestine under the auspices of the National Association of the Martyrs' Families of Palestine, the framework that unites the Martyrs' families wherever they are, the main protector of their affairs and rights. Together with you we remember the sacrifices and struggle of the pure Martyrs, guardians of the land and identity who have turned our people's cause into a historical epic of struggle and resolve.'"
PA TV news reports on Erekat, PA PM emphasis for support for PA salaries for terrorist
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 16, 2017
Official PA TV newsreader: "Secretary of the PLO Executive Committee[, PLO Chief Negotiator, and Fatah Central Committee member] Saeb Erekat said that the occupation government is attempting to divert the world’s attention from the continuation of the occupation for the last 50 years by harassing our people’s institutions, talking about the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and threatening diplomats with expulsion... Erekat added that [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu aspires to increase the unrest that prevails in the region so that he will be able to continue creating an apartheid regime and thwarting the establishment of the Palestinian state..."
Official PA TV newsreader: [PA] Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah explained that the rights of the Martyrs' families are protected, and the work continues together with the PLO institutions in order to meet this national obligation. He made these statements on behalf of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas during the central public meal to break the Ramadan fast that was held in honor of the Martyrs' families in Nablus, in the presence of public and official figures."

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt
PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs: Abbas and PA leadership won’t give in to pressure, but will continue terrorist salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 16, 2017
Headline: "Karake: The incitement against the aid to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs is aggression against the Palestinian entity"

"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs [Issa Karake] said that the Israeli incitement against the aid that the PA gives to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) is open aggression against the Palestinian entity and its national, humanitarian, and social values and an attempt to undercut the PA and spur a difficult internal situation in Palestinian society…
Karake said: 'The world and the US should intervene to end the occupation that has caused the suffering of thousands of prisoners, the deaths of thousands of Martyrs, and the creation of an inhumane and tragic situation in the Palestinian society.'
Karake emphasized that the concern for the families of the prisoners and Martyrs, the aid to them, and the strengthening of their resolve will not stop, but rather continue. He also emphasized that the Palestinian leadership, [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, and the Palestinian people will not submit to these pressures, which should have been turned against Israel as an occupying authority that is committing ongoing war crimes against the Palestinian people.
Karake explained: 'We oppose the criminalization of our people's struggles and the negation our prisoners and Martyrs’ national and fighting status and identity. Our people has a legal and lawful right to protect itself, its rights, and its right to self-determination.'"
PA official on terrorist prisoners: They are “freedom fighters”, should be released “unconditionally”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 16, 2017
Headline: "Erekat: The Netanyahu government wants to divert the world's gaze from the continuation of the occupation"

"Yesterday evening [June 15, 2017] the PLO Department for Negotiations held a feast to break the [Ramadan] fast for families of the prisoners in the occupation's prisons in the presence of consuls, ambassadors, and the representatives to Palestine of various states. Present at the meeting were Secretary of the PLO [Executive Committee, PLO Chief Negotiator, and Fatah Central Committee member] Saeb Erekat, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov, Minister (sic., Director) of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake, and Chairman of the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares…
Erekat said: 'The meal to break the fast has become an annual tradition that brings together the families of the prisoners and members of the Arab and foreign diplomatic corps in Palestine.'

He added: 'We are working to end the occupation, to realize the sovereignty of the State of Palestine whose capital is Jerusalem, and to release all of the prisoners unconditionally, as they are fighters for freedom.' …He also noted that the government of [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu wants to divert the world’s gaze from the fact that the occupation has continued for 50 years by persecuting institutions of the Palestinian people and talking about the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids)…

[Click full article for more information]
PLO official: Terrorists are “freedom fighters” who are a “source of honor for the world”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 15, 2017
Headline: "Hashem: The prisoners and Martyrs are a basic national principle and their allowances are a political commitment and ethical obligation"

"Palestinian Liberation Front (i.e., member of the PLO) political bureau member Abu Saleh Hashem condemned the decision of the Israeli Parliament to approve yesterday [June 14, 2017] in a first reading a bill to deduct the financial allowances (mukhassasat) that the PA pays to the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) from the tax money that Israel collects for the PA…
Hashem responded to the approval of the bill that was submitted by Israeli Member of Parliament from the Yesh Atid political party Elazar Stern, the coalition, and members of the opposition factions… and also to American Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s statements, according to which senior PA officials agreed to stop paying compensation to the families of those who carried out attacks in Israel.
Hashem said that the Palestinian prisoners and Martyrs are freedom fighters who were arrested and died for the freedom of their people and homeland as part of the necessary and lawful struggle against the occupation of their land. He also warned against the occupation government's attempt to define them as 'terrorists' and to criminalize them and their national struggle, which constitutes a source of honor and appreciation for the world and its free people.

[Click full article for more information]
Official PA daily op-ed on terrorists: “Martyrs were and still are the compass of our struggle”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 15, 2017
Headline: "Just not their salaries"

Excerpt of op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, in his regular column in the official PA daily

"A short while ago, Israel succeeded in causing the UN, Norway, and Denmark to stop supporting a gender (i.e., women’s) center that serves 60 Palestinian women in the village of Bizzariya (sic., Burqa), whose founders named it after Martyr (Shahida) Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), [- the funding was stopped] on the pretext that she was a 'terrorist.' Unfortunately, these powers responded to Israel’s extortion, despite the UN and the two above-mentioned states knowing the truth. They know that Martyr Dalal was a Palestinian fighter who devoted her life to defending her cause, despite [the fact that she] loved life and wanted to live a free and dignified life like all young people in the different countries of the world.
However, the uprooting and occupying Israeli colonialism destroyed and threatened her life and the lives of her people throughout the entire world, which created the political circumstances that caused the young Palestinians to join the ranks of their national factions to defend the national rights that were stolen by colonialist Israel…

[Click full article for more information]
Palestinian officials: No plan on stopping PA salary for terrorists program, but program might be labelled differently
Source: Al-Ayyam, June 15, 2017
Headline: “Senior Palestinian officials emphasized the continued payment of the Martyrs and prisoners’ allowances: There are no plans to stop them”
(The article begins with an Arabic translation of a Reuters article from June 14, 2017 –Ed.) 
     "Palestinian officials say there are no plans to stop payments to families of Palestinians killed or wounded carrying out attacks against Israelis, contradicting comments by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Tillerson told a Senate hearing on Tuesday (June 13, 2017) he had received reassurances from [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas that the Palestinian Authority would end the practice of paying a monthly stipend to the families of suicide bombers and other attackers, commonly referred to by Palestinians as Martyrs (Shahids)...
But Palestinian officials said they were not aware of any change and that it was unlikely a policy that has been a cornerstone of social support for decades would be altered. ‘There have been talks about making the payments in a different way, but not ending them,’ said one official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to comment on discussions held with the Americans. ‘They could perhaps be labeled differently,’ he said, suggesting the description ‘Martyr’ could be dropped, but he added: ‘They are not going to be stopped.’"
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Click "full article" for a longer excerpt
Palestinian officials: PA will not change salaries for terrorists policy, despite US pressure
Source: Al-Quds, June 15, 2017
Headline: “Senior Palestinian sources to Al-Quds: The PA has not changed its position on the allowances of the Martyrs and prisoners, and it will not stop paying them; Commentators: Most of the Martyrs are civilians, and thousands of prisoners did not carry out acts of murder”
     “Al-Quds learned yesterday [June 14, 2017] from senior Palestinian sources that the PA has not changed its position regarding paying the allowances (mukhassasat) to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families and to the prisoners, and that the statements attributed to American Secretary of State Rex Tillerson regarding the PA’s intent to stop paying these allowances are incorrect, and constitute part of the tendentious incitement campaign that [Israeli] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli media outlets are leading against the Palestinian leadership and the PA. The sources emphasized… that the Israeli incitement campaign… is behind these demands to which the Palestinian side – which has emphasized time after time that the issue of the Martyrs and prisoners is a public national issue – cannot agree… In the meantime, Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Minister Issa Karake yesterday [June 14, 2017] emphasized that there is no truth in what was ascribed to Tillerson. He said that these news items are incorrect, and emphasized our people’s responsibility towards the families of its Martyrs and towards its prisoners, who have made all of these sacrifices for the freedom of our people and its independence.”
PLO official: Israel’s deducting from PA taxes amount equaling salaries to terrorists is “robbery”
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 15, 2017
Headline: “Rafat: The law deducting the allowances of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs is unacceptable”

“PLO Executive Committee member Saleh Rafat emphasized that the fact that the Israeli Parliament yesterday [June 14, 2017] approved in a first reading a law for deducting the allowances (mukhassasat ) of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids) [from the taxes Israel collects for the PA] is completely unacceptable as far as the Palestinians are concerned, and constitutes robbery and theft of Palestinian money.
He emphasized that the Martyrs and prisoners are victims of the occupation, and called on the countries that provide aid to Israel to discontinue it. In an interview with [the official PA radio] station The Voice of Palestine this morning Rafat said: ‘If Israel insists on the decision to deduct this money, the [Palestinian] leadership will turn to the International Criminal Court in order to put it on trial for this.’”
PLO official: no one has the right to stop paying the prisoner salaries
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 14, 2017
Headline: “[PLO] Executive Committee member: No one has the right to stop the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat)”

“PLO Executive Committee member Tayseer Khaled said that the Government of Israel and the American Administration are trying to drag the Palestinians into side battles and even invented [battles], like the Jewishness of the state, the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and the dismantling of UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East), and far from the gist of the conflict, which was and remains the Israeli occupation and the legal national rights of the Palestinian people.
He emphasized that the allowances that the PLO provides to the families of the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners of Palestine were, still are, and will continue to be a political, national, human, and moral obligation, and that no one in the PLO or PA has the right to stop paying these allowances, other than the Palestinian National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO), which has the political and legal authority on this matter.

[Click full article for more information]
PLO official: Paying salaries to terrorist “martyrs’” families is “a political, national, ethical, and social obligation”
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, June 14, 2017
Headline: “Majdalani: We will not accede to the American demand to stop the salaries (rawatib) of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families”

“PLO Executive Committee member [and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front (PPSF)] Ahmed Majdalani responded to American Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s statements, in which he said that the American administration asked the PA to stop paying compensation (Ta'widat) to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families, and said that it is not possible to accede to this request.
Majdalani added in a press statement today, Wednesday [June 14, 2017], that it is not possible to accede to this request as it constitutes a political, national, ethical, and social obligation to the Martyrs’ families. He emphasized that this subject will not be subject to bargaining, pressures, or extortion from Israel.

[Click full article for more information]
PLO Prisoners’ Affairs’ director about terrorist salaries: “A national, moral, and human responsibility,” some salaries to released prisoners stopped in Gaza due to Fatah-Hamas rift, not US pressure
Source: Sawa, independent Palestinian news agency, June 14, 2017
Headline: “Karake revealed to Sawa the reasons for stopping the salaries of some of the released prisoners”

“Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that stopping the released prisoners’ salaries (rawatib) is a political decision that is connected to the issue of the [Fatah-Hamas] rift and the Palestinian conflict that has been waged for many years.
Karake said in a special statement to the [independent Palestinian] news agency Sawa this morning, Wednesday [June 14, 2017], that the decision concerns the connection between Gaza and the rest of the homeland, and is not connected to the American and Israeli pressures.
In response to American Secretary of State [Rex Tillerson's] statements about stopping the allowances (mukhassasat), Karake said that this is part of the aggression, war, and pressures against the Palestinians to stop helping the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids)…
Karake emphasized that the Palestinian leadership will not submit to any pressure, and that the aid to the families of the prisoners and Martyrs is a national, moral, and human responsibility. He also rejected all the terms and concepts that define the prisoners and Martyrs as ‘terrorists.’”
Fatah: Israeli bill to withhold taxes equaling sum paid in salaries to terrorists is “criminal aggression and unjust robbery”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2017
Headline: “Fatah: The fact that the Israeli Ministerial Committee authorized stealing our money is criminal aggression and unacceptable”

“The Fatah Movement opposed the fact that the Israeli Ministerial Committee [for Legislation] approved a bill (The bill has not yet been passed by the Israeli Parliament –Ed.) to steal some of the Palestinian money that is designated for the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids). It said that this step is criminal aggression and unjust robbery of the Palestinian people’s money.
Official [Fatah] Movement Spokesman [and Fatah Revolutionary Council member] Osama Al-Qawasmi said in a press statement yesterday evening [June 12, 2017] that the Israeli occupation state and its government must stop this irresponsible behavior, which will only lead to additional tension and constitutes aggression against our people’s resources and interference in its internal affairs, which we adamantly oppose.”
It’s “a declaration of war” says PLO Prisoners’ Commission director, if Israel withholds from PA taxes the amount PA pays in terrorist salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2017
"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said yesterday [June 12, 2017], during his meeting with families of prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), that Israel as an occupying power can exploit its power to stop the Palestinian tax money to exert pressure and commit extortion. However, it cannot stop our national honor and our sacred right to freedom and defense of our people's rights…
Karake said that the decision of the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation in the Israeli Parliament (sic., government) on June 11, 2017, to approve a bill (sic., the bill was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation under the Israeli government. The bill has not yet been approved by the Israeli Parliament) to deduct [from the Palestinian tax revenues Israel collects for the PA] the allowances of the families of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded is a declaration of war against our people's rights and the humanity of the Palestinians. He added that the strategic purpose of the decision is to delegitimize the Palestinian national struggle for the right to self-determination, and to consider the Palestinian resistance to the occupation, which is represented by the prisoners and Martyrs, as a crime and terror. This is while the longest occupation in modern history is the cruelest, most violent, and severest type of terror, and is the reason for terror and instability in the region."

PLO official: PA leadership will not stop salaries but “continue to be loyal to the Martyrs’ blood and the prisoners’ suffering”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2017
Headline: “Majdalani called on countries to support the [PA] budget in response to Netanyahu’s statements”
     “Secretary-General of the [Palestinian] Popular Struggle Front (PPSF) and member of the PLO Executive Committee Dr. Ahmed Majdalani said that… [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s call to dismantle UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) and transfer its responsibility for the Palestinian refugees’ issues to the [UN] High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the fact that the Israeli Parliament approved a bill (sic., the bill was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation under the Israeli government. The bill has not yet been approved by the Israeli Parliament –Ed.) ordering to deduct the money that the PA pays as allowances (mukhassasat) to the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families, are a type of robbery and theft of the Palestinian taxpayers’ money…
Majdalani calmed the prisoners and Martyrs’ families [saying] that the Palestinian leadership will not submit to the occupation’s laws and will continue to be loyal to the Martyrs’ blood and the prisoners’ suffering.”
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Fatah official and released prisoner in Gaza: The PA must continue the salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2017
Headline: “The prisoners’ families in Gaza condemned the theft of the prisoners’ allowances (mukhassasat ) by the occupation”
     “The prisoners’ families condemned the racist Israeli decision to stop the prisoners’ salaries (rawatib) (this refers to the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation approving a bill to deduct a sum that equals the PA’s terrorist salaries from taxes Israel collects for the PA. The bill has not yet been passed by the Israeli Parliament –Ed.). They emphasized that their sons are struggling for freedom, and they are prisoners of war and not criminals, and that Israel is the one that commits organized terror against our people, our holy sites, and our land…
Fatah Movement [General ] Commissioner for Prisoners' Affairs [in Gaza] released prisoner Tayseer Al-Bardini explained that this decision and Israeli law are not something new, as the occupation is always trying to burden our people and the prisoners, and to put them on the terror list even though they are struggling for freedom, just as has been anchored in the international conventions on human rights.
He emphasized that the PA’s role in opposing this decision is in providing the salaries to the prisoners and putting an emphasis on the prisoners’ rights and their ongoing path of struggle.”
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Head of PLO Prisoners’ Commission: Prisoners’ salaries will continue, Israel withholding taxes is “robbery”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, June 13, 2017
Headline: “Karake: We’re continuing to transfer the allowances to the prisoners and Martyrs’ families”
     “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake emphasized that the transfer of the allowances to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families and prisoners will continue. He described the occupation government’s attempt to authorize the theft of the allowances of the Palestinian prisoners and Martyrs’ families from the PA’s tax revenues as robbery (refers to a new bill to deduct PA salaries to terrorists from taxes Israel collects for the PA –Ed.), and emphasized that there will be a petition to the international legal system to sue the occupation government over this crime.
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PLO official: “We are continuing to pay the allowances to the prisoners and Martyrs’ families”
Source: Official PA TV Live, June 13, 2017
Official PA TV News

Official PA TV newsreader: “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake explained that there is an intention to continue paying the allowances of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners’ families. He described the Israeli occupation government’s attempt to legislate a law that will steal the allowances of the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families from the tax money [that Israel collects for the PA] as robbery. Karake emphasized that it is necessary to urgently sue the occupation government over this step and turn to international law and the international legal institutions, and noted that our Palestinian people will not submit to the occupation government’s laws.”

Visual:
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake is seen giving a speech but there is no sound, and in the background the following text appears: “Karake: We are continuing to pay the allowances to the prisoners and Martyrs’ families.”
National Forces react to Dalal Center backlash and demand to reduce prisoners salaries, as “harming our national symbols”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2017
     “The National and Islamic Forces (unaffiliated body with representatives from the PLO and outside of it, see further below -Ed.) discussed the latest political developments and the issues of the internal situation in a meeting that was held yesterday [June 12, 2017] in Ramallah… The forces expressed their opposition to the blow to the salaries (rawatib) of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, and the importance of thwarting all of the current attempts by the occupation to exert pressure and incite, including the decision to deduct from the tax money [Israel collects for the PA] as an exchange for the prisoners’ rights (i.e., a proposed bill to deduct the terrorists’ salaries from the taxes), which constitutes theft of Palestinian money, dirty extortion, and robbery by the occupation… The forces emphasized that they oppose harming our national symbols, and particularly our people’s Martyrs and its prisoners, and the attempts to define them as terrorists as is currently happening with Martyr Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), as several countries have decided to boycott a center named after her that was established in the village of Burqa.”

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PLO official says terrorist salaries will continue, as it is a “national and humanitarian responsibility”
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, June 12, 2017
Headline: “Tayseer Khaled: Israel returns to robbing and pouncing on the Palestinian tax money”

“PLO Executive Committee member and Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) political bureau member Tayseer Khaled again emphasized the decision of the PLO Executive Committee in its latest meeting, which determined that the Palestinian National Fund (see note below –Ed.) will continue to stand by its national and humanitarian responsibility towards the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded of the Palestinian people and the families of the prisoners in the Israeli collective prisons. This is the responsibility that the National Fund has borne since its establishment in 1966, as the national institution appointed to take care of the interests of the victims of the Israeli occupation and the terror that the State of Israel has been committing against the members of the Palestinian people since the first day of its establishment.
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Terrorists deserve salaries, they are not “highway robbers, but people who sacrificed their lives and freedom,” says PA Ministry of Information
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 12, 2017
Headline: “The [PA] Ministry of Information: The Martyrs, injured, and prisoners are an unavoidable outcome of the legitimate resistance”
    “The [PA] Ministry of Information said that the bill of what is called the Ministerial Committee for Legislation in the Israeli Parliament (this refers to the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation approving a bill to deduct a sum that equals the PA’s terrorist salaries from taxes Israel collects for the PA. The bill has not yet been passed by the Israeli Parliament –Ed.) on deducting the allowances of the prisoners, the wounded, and the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) from the PA tax revenues is political extortion that is added to the occupation’s record, which is overflowing with cases of robbery of the [Palestinian] people’s resources.
The ministry emphasized that the Martyrs and prisoners are not highway robbers, but rather people who have sacrificed their lives and freedom for the resistance to the occupation, which has been approved by all of the laws, and which all peoples of the world have carried out throughout history in order to be rid of colonialism.
The ministry said that Israel defining the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners [as terrorists] proves the extent of terror and incitement, which ignores the fact that the occupation is the reason, and the sacrifices of the [Palestinian] people and its struggle are an unavoidable outcome and a natural response.”
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Head of PA-funded Prisoners’ Club: PLO’s responsibility for prisoners never stops, nor will salaries
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 12, 2017
Headline: “Fares: Deducting the allowances of the prisoners, the families of the Martyrs, and the wounded from the tax money is robbery”

“Chairman of the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares emphasized that the fact that the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation yesterday [June 11, 2017] approved a bill (the bill was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation under the Israeli government, but has not yet been passed by the Israeli Parliament –Ed.) to deduct the money that the PA pays as allowances for the prisoners, families of the Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded from the tax money that Israel collects for the PA is robbery and theft of Palestinian money. This is after [Israel] was unable in recent years to influence the donor countries by spreading [the claim] that this aid and money are used for ‘incitement and terror.’

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The Palestinian National Council: “Support and aid to the heroic prisoners… are a national obligation of the highest order, impossible to compromise”
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, June 12, 2017
Headline: “The [Palestinian] National Council: The aid to the prisoners and the Martyrs’ families is a national obligation on which it is impossible to compromise”

“The Palestinian National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO) emphasized that the support and aid to the heroic prisoners and their families, as well as to the families of the heroic Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded, are a national obligation of the highest order on which it is impossible to compromise or submit to extortion.
In a press statement today, Monday [June 12, 2017], the National Council opposed the bill that the Ministerial Committee for Legislation in the Israeli Parliament (sic., the bill has not yet been passed by the Israeli Parliament) approved yesterday, which orders a deduction of the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners and their families and the families of the Palestinian Martyrs from the PA tax money that Israel collects on its behalf.
The Council said that this bill comes as part of a series of steps, policies, and laws that were intended to harm the sanctity of the struggle of the prisoners, Martyrs, and wounded, to bring about a renunciation of their rights, and to pressure the PA to stop paying these allowances to the families of the Palestinian Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded.

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PA leadership won’t be blackmailed into ceasing salaries for prisoners, will ask Arab states to pay, says PLO Prisoners’ Commission head
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), June 11, 2017
Headline: "Karake: We will not agree to blackmail and will continue to support the prisoners and Martyrs"
     "Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake emphasized that the Palestinian leadership will not agree to blackmail and bargaining over everything regarding the matter of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and the financial support that the leadership provides to them. He also emphasized that the Palestinian leadership will continue to support the prisoners and the [families of] the Martyrs.
Karake said to [independent Palestinian news agency] Donia Al-Watan that the Palestinian leadership will not agree to surrender to the Israeli pressure and its racist laws that are attempting to delegitimize the struggle of the prisoners and Martyrs. He noted that the Israeli occupation is striving to present their struggle as 'crime and terror.'

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PA will continue paying terrorist salaries, even if Israel deducts money from PA taxes, says Director of PLO Prisoners’ Affairs Commission
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, June 11, 2017
Headline: "Karake to Wattan: The response to the confiscation of the tax money is to continue supporting the prisoners and Martyrs' families"
     "Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake responded to [the independent Palestinian news agency] Wattan this evening, Sunday [June 11, 2017] about the fact that the Israeli Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved a bill (sic., the bill was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation under the Israeli government. The bill has not yet been approved by the Israeli Parliament) to deduct the money that the PA pays as allowances (mukhassasat) to the prisoners, Martyrs' (Shahids') families, and wounded from the tax money that Israel collects for the PA. He said that they will continue to support them and will not submit to the Israeli pressure and blackmail.
Karake explained that the decision to transfer the allowances of the prisoners and Martyrs' families is in the PA's hands, and not in Israel's hands. However, if Israel will deduct large amounts from the tax money that it collects for the PA, that will influence the budget. He also noted that it is not only a financial matter, but also a legal [matter]."
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Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs exposes the PA’s lie that only the PLO and not the PA pays terrorist salaries, demanding explanation from PA treasury why some salaries stopped
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, June 6, 2017
Headline: "Karake demands that the [PA] government explain the reasons for stopping the payment of the prisoners' salaries"

"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake demanded that the [PA] Ministry of Finance publish an explanation regarding the reasons for stopping the payment of the salaries of more than 200 prisoners, some of them released [prisoners].
Karake said in a press statement that the Commission [of Prisoners' Affairs] has received many inquiries and complaints on the matter, without knowing what the reasons are that led to stopping the payment of the salaries, and also without an official response on the matter from any official party.
He added that [the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs], as a concerned party, was surprised by the step that was taken without its knowledge, and that many of the complaints it receives require an official explanation from the Ministry of Finance and the [PA] government regarding the reasons for this step."
Palestinian human rights group: PA cutting some released terrorists’ salaries disrespects their “role in the struggle and defense of Palestinian people’s rights”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 6, 2017
Headline: “Addameer again emphasizes its position against the policy of stopping the payment of salaries”

“The human rights organization Addameer condemned the [PA] government’s stopping payment of the salaries of several released prisoners in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. It said that ‘This policy, which was implemented in an arbitrary and illegal manner, is a response by the PA to the Israeli and American demands to stop paying the prisoners and the released [prisoners].’
According to the Addameer organization’s figures, the PA Ministry of Finance paid the allowances of the prisoners’ families and the released prisoners’ salaries on June 4, 2017, but over 250 released prisoners from all of the Palestinian factions, who were released in the ‘Loyalty to the Free’ deal (i.e., Shalit prisoner exchange deal) and were convicted in the past of murdering Israelis by the Israeli occupation authorities, were surprised when their allowances and salaries were not paid…
It demanded that the PA respect the prisoners and value their role in the struggle and the defense of the Palestinian people’s rights, instead of fighting against them and their families through their livelihood.”
PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Director reaffirms PA support for salaries of convicted terrorists
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 5, 2017
Headline: “Karake: The prisoners’ statement supports the leadership and its orientation”
     “Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… viewed the appointment of Karim Younes (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1) as a member of the Fatah Central Committee as a response from the Fatah leadership to the occupation, and as an expression of its adherence to the prisoners’ issue and of its firm opposition to the pressures that are being exerted on the Palestinian leadership to stop paying the salaries of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids).”

Karim Younes - an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and murdering Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg in 1980 together with his cousin Maher Younes. Younes was originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.
PA cuts salaries to released Hamas terrorists at U.S. request
Source: Al-Hayat (London), June 5, 2017
Headline: “The PA has stopped the salaries of released prisoners from Hamas in Gaza”
     “The PA has stopped the payment of the salaries (rawatib) of a number of released prisoners who hold positions of leadership in the Hamas movement, including Director of the movement’s Political Bureau in the Gaza Strip Yahya Al-Sinwar.
Released prisoners in Gaza said that they were surprised yesterday [June 4, 2017] when they went to the banks to receive their salaries [and discovered] that they were not transferred by the [PA] Ministry of Finance in Ramallah. Hamas sources in Gaza noted that 277 released prisoners did not receive their salaries at the beginning of the month as is customary. The Ministry of Finance in Ramallah did not deny or confirm the news item, but sources in the [PA] government estimated that the stopping of these released prisoners’ salaries is part of a series of steps that the PA has decided to take in Gaza in order to press Hamas to hand over the rule of the Gaza Strip to the [PA] government. Knowledgeable sources also told the [independent Palestinian news] agency Sama that the stopping of the salaries was done in response to an American and Israeli request, and that this is only the first group, which additional groups will join later on.”

PA cuts funding to 277 released terrorists following U.S. demand
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, June 4, 2017
Headline: "In accordance with the American request, Abbas' government has stopped the salaries of hundreds of released prisoners"
     "Local media outlets, which quoted released prisoners in the Gaza Strip, noted that [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas’ government has stopped the salaries (rawatib) of dozens of them and the released prisoners in the occupied West Bank.
Released prisoners that were expelled to the Gaza Strip said that when they went to the banks to receive their salaries, they were surprised [to discover] that this month's salary did not come through. They clarified that 277 released prisoners did not receive their salaries this month and demanded that all of the relevant parties press the PA to return their salaries.
Abbas critic claims Abbas considering ploy to present terrorist salaries as “social aid” to comply with US demand
Source: Fatah Voice, independent Palestinian news website, June 3, 2017
Excerpt of an op-ed by Hassan Asfour, a former Palestinian minister and associate of Muhammad Dahlan, PA Parliament Member and former member of Fatah Central Committee
       “[PA President] Mahmoud Abbas’ staff has evaded the exposure of the political truth and the fact that American President [Donald Trump] demanded in their latest meeting in Bethlehem that he stop the prisoners’ and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) salaries (rawatib), and told him that this is a ‘significant’ issue for the American administration as part of the plan it has begun to draft. Abbas and his staff said that they cannot take this step ‘at the moment,’ as it would lead to an outbreak of uncontrollable ‘popular intifada.’
However, Abbas, despite his initial objection, has begun to examine practical options to comply with the American demand in a way that will not lead to an explosion that might lead to his downfall and the downfall of their joint plan (i.e., Abbas’ and US’). Among these options that are being examined with special secrecy, is the option of transferring the prisoners’ and Martyrs' salaries to a 'social insurance' body so that it will look as if it is 'humanitarian and social aid to needy families' and not 'monthly salaries to fighter families...'"
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PLO Executive Committee defends Palestinian National Fund; denies link to terror funding
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 31, 2017
“The PLO Executive Committee convened last night [May 30, 2017], led by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas…
The Executive Committee condemned the maneuvering and tricks of [Israeli Prime Minister] Benjamin Netanyahu and his government’s top officials, and their desperate attempts to divert attention from their aggressive and expansionist policies that are contrary to peace, and [their attempts] to fabricate crises with the Palestinian side in order to avoid the obligations of a political solution to the conflict. One time this is in the name of the Jewish state, and another time it is through an attempt to turn the [PLO] Palestinian National Fund into a terror organization (see note below –Ed.). The [PLO Executive] Committee emphasized, in a manner that leaves no room for doubt, that the Palestinian National Fund is a red line and a PLO national institution, and that it will continue in its national and humanitarian role.”

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Abbas' appointment of murderer to Fatah's Central Committee means "the prisoners or Martyrs` salaries [won`t] be stopped," says Fatah official
Source: Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, May 31, 2017
[Fatah Central Committee member Jamal Muhaisen:] "'The appointment of Karim Younes (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1), who has been imprisoned for the last 36 years in the Israeli prisons, as a Fatah Central Committee member by the decision of the committee and with the approval of the [Fatah] Revolutionary Committee, was an exceptional step of great significance, as the position of the [Fatah] Movement is a position of struggle. However, the value of the decision lies in the fact that it was made at a time when pressures are being applied to [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas to stop the prisoners and Martyrs' (Shahids') salaries (rawatib). The selection of the most veteran prisoner in the prisons (i.e., Karim Younes) as a member of the [Fatah] Central Committee is a message to them that they should not think that one day the prisoners or Martyrs' salaries will be stopped. This is because the decisions of the international bodies permit the Palestinian people and every people in the world to fight with all means against the occupation, and our prisoners and Martyrs are our pride and the knights of the Palestinian people, and not terrorists.'"
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As pretext to defend PA salaries to terrorists and “Martyrs’” families, Palestinian political party falsely claims Israel rewards family of mass murderer Goldstein for murdering 29 Muslims
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, May 14, 2017
Headline: “The [Palestinian National] Initiative calls to refuse to stop paying the allowances of the prisoners and the families of the Martyrs”

“The Palestinian National Initiative movement (i.e., a Palestinian political party, not a member of the PLO) called to reject and block the Israeli-American pressures to stop paying the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the Palestinian prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids).
The movement said today [May 14, 2017] in a statement… that this contradicts the national values and elementary human rights, and harms the principle of honoring the sacrifice of the male and female fighters of the Palestinian people, who sacrificed their freedom or their sons’ lives for their people’s freedom, and struggled while implementing the decisions of their national movement…
The [Palestinian National] Initiative statement wondered: ‘Did the government of Israel stop paying the allowances of the families of terrorists such as Baruch Goldstein, who committed the massacre at the Ibrahimi Mosque (i.e., Cave of the Patriarchs) in Hebron, or the allowances of the families of those who committed the crimes of burning young [Muhammad] Abu Khdeir and the Dawabsheh family (sic., allowances were not given for the act of committing a crime in any of the cases mentioned -Ed.) – criminals who cannot even be compared to the Palestinian freedom fighters?’”

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PLO members about terrorists: They sacrificed their lives for “national freedom and independence”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, May 14, 2017
Headline: “The People’s Party rejects the extortion attempts whose goal is to stop the payment of the Martyrs and prisoners’ allowances”

“The Palestinian People’s Party (i.e., a PLO faction) expressed its strong opposition to the vote in the Israeli Parliament [on June 14, 2017] in a first reading of a bill to cut the salaries of the Palestinian prisoners in the occupation’s prisons (sic., the bill calls to deduct the PA terrorist salaries from taxes collected by Israel for the PA), in a cheap attempt by the occupation to extort and rob the Palestinian people’s money.
The party said in a press statement that this constitutes severe contempt for the sacrifices that have been made by the Palestinian people and its sons, who have given their lives for national freedom and independence. It added that the Palestinian people honors and appreciates the fact that they have sacrificed their lives and freedom.”
PLO political faction condemns proposed Israeli law to cut funds transfered to PA, honors "sacrifices" made by Palestinian people
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, May 14, 2017
Headline: “The People’s Party rejects the extortion attempts whose goal is to stop the payment of the Martyrs and prisoners’ allowances”
    “The Palestinian People’s Party (i.e., a PLO faction) expressed its strong opposition to the vote in the Israeli Parliament [on June 14, 2017] in a first reading of a bill to cut the salaries of the Palestinian prisoners in the occupation’s prisons (sic., the bill calls to deduct the PA terrorist salaries from taxes collected by Israel for the PA), in a cheap attempt by the occupation to extort and rob the Palestinian people’s money.
The party said in a press statement that this constitutes severe contempt for the sacrifices that have been made by the Palestinian people and its sons, who have given their lives for national freedom and independence. It added that the Palestinian people honors and appreciates the fact that they have sacrificed their lives and freedom.”
6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons, 13 are PA Parliament members
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 12, 2017
Headline: “69 years after the Nakba (i.e., “the catastrophe,” the Palestinian term for the establishment of the State of Israel), the occupation controls more than 85% of historical Palestine”

“According to the Central Bureau of Statistics… the number of prisoners in the occupation’s prisons and the Israeli detention centers currently stands at 6,500 prisoners, including 57 female prisoners - 13 of whom are minors, over 300 children, approximately 500 administrative detainees, 13 [PA] Parliament members, 20 prisoners who were arrested before the signing of the [1993] Oslo Accords, and 44 prisoners who have served over 20 years.”
PLO official falsely claims Netanyahu and Kerry signed document authorizing Palestinian terrorist payments
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), May 5, 2017
Headline: "The PA holds a document [authorizing] the payment of the prisoners' salaries through the PLO fund"
     "Ahmed Majdalani, PLO leadership member and advisor to [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas, said to [Israeli TV] Reshet Bet that there is a document in the hands of the Palestinians authorizing them to pay salaries to the families of the security prisoners imprisoned in Israel from the PLO coffers, rather than from the Palestinian Authority coffers. According to the report, [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Advisor] Attorney Isaac Molho, PA senior official [and PLO Chief Negotiator] Saeb Erekat, and former American Minister of Foreign Affairs (i.e., Secretary of State) John Kerry are signed on the document that was achieved three years ago."

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PLO Director of Prisoners’ Affairs confirms payments to terrorists will continue
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), May 4, 2017
"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake denied reports in the social media regarding stopping the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli occupation's prisons.
Karake emphasized in an exclusive statement to [the independent Palestinian news agency] Donia Al-Watan that the prisoners will receive their allowances regularly each month."
Fatah official: "The PA will reject any proposal" for stopping the salaries to terrorists and their families, the prisoners are "Palestinian fighters"
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, May 4, 2017
      “After Palestinian [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ visit to the White House and his meeting with American President Donald Trump yesterday evening [May 3, 2017], the White House published a statement in which it was explained that Trump demanded of Abbas that the PA stop paying the allowances (mukhassasat) of the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and injured as a step towards a peace agreement between the Palestinians and Israelis…
Fatah Movement Deputy Chairman [and Fatah Central Committee member] Mahmoud Al-Aloul said in an interview with the [independent Palestinian news] agency Wattan that the PA will reject any proposal that demands to stop taking care of the families of the Martyrs, prisoners, and injured through the transfer of monthly financial allowances (mukhassasat). He added that this is a national cause, and that the American administration and the occupation encountered a refusal on this matter. Al-Aloul noted that the injured, Martyrs, and prisoners are Palestinian fighters, and that we must under no circumstances accede to the pressures to stop their allowances.”
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PLO official: Abbas “emphasized his absolute refusal” to Israeli demands to stop PA salaries to terrorists
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, Apr. 29, 2017
Headline: “Karake demanded urgent international intervention and confirmed that an additional group of prisoners has joined the [hunger] strike of freedom and dignity”
      “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… explained in an interview with Radio Mawtini today, Saturday [April 29, 2017]… that ‘[PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] emphasized his absolute refusal of the Israeli demands to stop the allowances (mukhassasat) of the families of the prisoners and Martyrs (Shahids), and emphasized his absolute support for them (i.e., for the payments).’”
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PLO official: "Palestinian leadership must not submit to the American and Israeli pressures demanding to stop the allowances of the Martyrs"
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Apr. 27, 2017
Headline: “Khaled: The factions were not informed about the stopping of the Palestinian National Fund allowances”
     “PLO Executive Committee member [and member of the political bureau of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine] Tayseer Khaled… emphasized in a press release - a copy of which reached [the independent Palestinian news agency] Donia Al-Watan - that great pressures are being exerted on the Palestinian side by the American administration, the Israeli occupation state, and Europe to stop the Palestinian National Fund’s humanitarian and national role. He emphasized that these pressures were intended to stop the payment of the prisoners and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) allowances (mukhassasat), and also to stop the PLO factions’ allowances…
Khaled noted that the fund will continue to fulfill its national and humanitarian role and take care of the families of the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners…
He emphasized that the Palestinian leadership must not submit to the American and Israeli pressures demanding to stop the allowances of the Martyrs and wounded. He also emphasized that this issue is not up for debate, and that the payments must continue as they were. This is because the [Palestinian] National Fund is not a terror organization as Israel claims (see note below –Ed.), but rather a national institution that is part of the PLO institutions and fulfills its national and humanitarian role to ease the burden on the Palestinian civilian, which is caused as a result of the actions of killing and terror that the occupation state is committing against the Palestinian civilians.”

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PLO official: PA cuts to salaries of government workers will not affect salaries of prisoners or released prisoners
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Apr. 26, 2017
Headline: “Karake: The cuts in the Gaza salaries will not harm the released prisoners”
    “Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… said in an exclusive statement to [independent Palestinian news agency] Donia Al-Watan that the cuts approved by the [PA] Palestinian government to the salaries of the state employees in Gaza will not harm the released prisoners or the prisoners in the Israeli occupation’s prisons, and noted that the cuts in the employees’ salaries are related to the existing situation in the Gaza Strip. Karake explained that the government has approved these cuts because there is money that is going to the Gaza Strip and taxes that are collected in the Gaza Strip [by Hamas], but which do not reach the [PA] government coffers. He noted that this problem – for which Hamas bears the responsibility – is not related to the matter of the released prisoners.”
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Fatah condemns as "incitement" Israel's demands to stop paying salaries to terrorists, insists that terrorists are "symbols of our legitimate national struggle"
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Apr. 25, 2017
Headline: "Fatah condemns the Israeli incitement against the [PA] president and the prisoners"
     "The East Gaza branch of the Fatah Movement said that it is monitoring with concern the organized and systematic incitement campaign that the occupation state's government is waging against [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian leadership on everything connected to the payment of the living allowances (mukhassasat) to the victims of the occupation and its actions (the Martyrs, wounded, and prisoners) [parentheses in source].
The movement said that it thinks that the goal of the [incitement] campaign is to disrupt the president's meeting with US President [Donald] Trump, which is expected to take place on May 3 [2017] at the White House,
In a statement published by the branch's Commission of Information, Fatah said: 'While the movement strongly condemns the onslaught of inciting lies against President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian leadership, it believes that the families of the Palestinian Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded are symbols of our legitimate national struggle and the conscience of the Palestinian people, and that they are victims of the Israeli occupation and its daily actions, which have deviated from all norms and violated all international laws.’
The movement emphasized: 'The Israeli occupation is the symbol and height of terror, and [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu and his racist government are the last ones that can talk about terror, as the acts of his government against the prisoners, children, holy sites, women, and Palestinian land, in addition to the fact that he funds the attacks of the settlers and the occupation soldiers, are the best testimony to the racism and fascism by which this government is characterized.'"

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PA Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Israel is inciting against the PA over terrorist salaries, salaries are “marginal matter”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 24, 2017
Headline: “The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs warns the Trump administration about Netanyahu’s traps”

“The [PA] Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the obstacles that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is placing before [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas’ visit in Washington…
In its statement, it noted that the Israeli government led by Netanyahu has hardened its positions and escalated its provocative actions, whose goal is to place obstacles before the American efforts being made to revive the peace process and start serious and real negotiations between the Palestinian and Israeli sides. A recent obvious example of this was the political escalation and state incitement by Netanyahu against President Abbas, which was clearly seen in his latest interview with the American [TV] channel Fox [on April 21, 2017], in which he claimed that the test of President Abbas’ level of seriousness regarding peace is stopping the payment of salaries to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) and prisoners’ families.

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PA will continue to pay salaries to terrorists, says PLO official
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Apr. 23, 2017
Headline: “Karake: New prisoners will join the [hunger] strike”
     “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake… said today, Sunday [April 23, 2017], in an interview with Radio Mawtini… that [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s statements about stopping the salaries of the prisoners’ and Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families are rejected outright. He noted that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas has emphasized that he will not shake off the prisoners’ and Martyrs’ families, as they are part of the fundamental national principles for which the Palestinian revolution broke out. He also said that Netanyahu’s statements are unacceptable and illogical as they define the Palestinian national struggle as terror, and he noted that the Israeli occupation is an absolute terrorist in its inhumane behavior against the Palestinian people.”

In a governmental meeting on April 23, 2017, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said: “The Palestinian Authority needs to stop funding the terrorists sitting in prison and stop funding the families of terrorists who were killed while committing their crimes. This is a simple and clear test of the Palestinians’ desire for peace. You cannot be in favor of peace with Israel, and at the same time glorify and fund the murderers of Israelis and the murderers of other innocents.” The statement came after Netanyahu, in an interview with Fox News on April 21, 2017, called on the PA to “stop paying terrorists.”
PA Minister of Justice responds to Israeli demand to cease payments to terrorists: "Our brave prisoners and righteous Martyrs... are fighters for freedom, justice, and peace"
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 23, 2017
Headline: “Abu Diyak: The occupation is terrorist and the prisoners are symbols of our struggle”
      “[PA] Minister of Justice Ali Abu Diyak emphasized yesterday [April 22, 2017] that it is not possible… to stain with terror the struggle of our people that is defending itself, its land, its holy sites, its freedom, and its just rights.
Abu Diyak said in response to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s statements regarding the request to stop paying financial allowances (mukhassasat) to the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families: ‘The Martyrs and prisoners are the symbols of our legitimate national struggle, the conscience of our Palestinian people, and victims of the organized terror and state terror that the occupation uses against our people.’”
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PLO official: Calls to stop salaries are "insolence and an act of provocation"; recipients are "freedom fighters," not terrorists
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Apr. 22, 2017
Headline: "The call to stop the allowances of the families of the Martyrs, prisoners, and wounded is insolence and an act of provocation"
     "PLO Executive Committee member and member of the political bureau of the Democratic Front [for the Liberation of Palestine] Tayseer Khaled emphasized that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s statements about stopping the salaries of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded are insolence and an act of provocation, and come as part of an organized campaign led by the occupation government in coordination with the American administration and several European parties.
Khaled added in an interview with the media outlets that this campaign is not meant to examine the will of the Palestinians to advance in the process of the political arrangement or the peace plan that the American administration is talking about. It is a trial balloon and a tool to measure the willingness to make a series of concessions - which the Al-Quds newspaper reported on from reliable and knowledgeable sources in Washington - including the Palestinian side's return to negotiations without preconditions and stopping the payment of the financial allowances to the prisoners in the prisons and their families. This is under the pretext that this is liable to encourage 'terror,' according to the claims of parties in the Israeli government and the American administration.
He emphasized: 'The source of terror in the region is Jewish–Israeli, and those whose allowances the American administration is demanding to stop are freedom fighters, and the Palestinian side cannot relate to these provocative demands."

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6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 16, 2017
Headline: “On the eve of Prisoner’s Day: 6,500 prisoners - including 57 women and 300 children - in the occupation’s prisons”
       “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs, the [PA-funded] Prisoners’ Club, and the Central Bureau of Statistics said that there are 6,500 Palestinian prisoners in the occupation’s prisons, including 57 women and 300 children.”
Salaries of prisoners from the PA Security Forces from Gaza reduced by 30%
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Apr. 8, 2017
Headline: “The reduction of salaries also included the prisoners from the PA Security Forces in Gaza”
      “The prisoners from the PA Security Forces in Gaza said that the reduction that the [PA] unity government carried out in last month’s (i.e., March 2017) salaries of the [public] employees in the Gaza Strip also included them. Prisoners noted in separate interviews with the [independent Palestinian news] agency Safa that 30-40% was deducted from their salaries, exactly like all the rest of the PA employees in Gaza. The prisoners described the step that was carried out against them as ‘arbitrary, not national, and irresponsible,’ and demanded that the Fatah leadership and [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas intervene urgently to compensate them and again pay their full salaries. Safa spoke with a number of prisoners in the Nafha Prison, where there are 23 prisoners from the PA Security Forces in Gaza all of whom had part of their salaries deducted, along with [additional] prisoners in other prisons.”
PA Prime Minister: Only additions to Gaza workers salary was cut, financial crisis due to 70% cut in foreign aid
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 8, 2017
Headline: “?$17 billion were transferred over the last 10 years in order to provide for the needs of the Gaza Strip’ – Hamdallah: Some of the wage additions were cut in the salaries of the Gaza employees; Hamas is taking all of the revenue and spending it only on itself”
       “[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said: ‘The [PA] government has decided to take austerity measures on the expenses since last year [2016] in the West Bank. The first sector in which they began was the security sector, whose expenses were reduced by 25%. In addition, the budgets of many sectors were reduced due to the 70% drop in foreign aid. We are suffering from a large financial crisis.’ He added: ‘The base salaries of the [public] employees in the Gaza Strip were not harmed, but rather some of the wage additions were cut, while some of them were left intact. This is so that we will be able to manage the financial crisis from which we are suffering.’ Hamdallah continued: ‘We demand that Hamas give the Gaza Strip to the legal leadership (i.e., Fatah), as Hamas is taking all of the revenue and spending it only on itself, while we are fulfilling all of our obligations towards the members of our people in the Gaza Strip...”
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Spokesman for PLO Commission of Prisoners Affairs: “All of the prisoners and Martyrs who have struggled and sacrificed for Palestine” have right “to receive their full salaries from the PA”
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Apr. 5, 2017
Headline: "Will Israel succeed in stopping the salaries of the prisoners and Martyrs?”
     "Signs of a new 'confrontation' between the PA and Israel are seen on the horizon due to a new bill submitted by Israeli Parliament members to deduct the amount of financial aid that the PA provides to the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners from the tax money collected by Israel and returned [to the PA]...
Spokesman for the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Hassan Abd Rabbo emphasized to the [independent Palestinian news] agency Ma'an that it is the right of all of the prisoners and Martyrs who have struggled and sacrificed for Palestine to receive their full salaries from the PA. He also emphasized that all of their salaries are paid by the PLO-affiliated Palestinian National Fund, and not by the Palestinian [PA] government. ‘Approximately 7,000 prisoners within the prisons and thousands of released prisoners receive monthly salaries of more than 1,400 [Israeli] shekels, in addition to canteen money that the prisoner receives in order to buy food and essentials within the prison,' said Abd Rabbo.
The prisoner's salary changes according to the years of imprisonment, social situation, and the number of his family members, as the salary of some of the prisoners reaches 10,000 shekels, particularly those who have served more than 10 years of imprisonment."
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Fatah official claims PA salaries to terrorists promotes peace by preventing Palestinian terrorists from joining ISIS
Source: Falestinona, website of Fatah's Information and Culture Commission in Lebanon, Apr. 5, 2017
     “[Fatah Central Committee member and Fatah Commissioner of International Relations Rawhi Fattouh said:] There is a drop in support and funding from all [countries], even in the Arab arena, and this withdrawal stems from a number of factors. The first is the freezing of the peace process due to the Israeli steps, and particularly the expansion of the settlements. This is in addition to the pressures exerted on the decision makers in these countries by supporters of Israel and [Israeli] lobbies with various names. For example, they tell them: Why are you providing aid to those who are paying the prisoners and the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families? In other words, the PLO and the PA - even though this is a natural thing, as the PA cannot shake off the Palestinian civilians. The wars that Israel waged against the Gaza Strip in 2008, 2012, and 2014 left many victims among the families of the civilians, and they were not fighters or military personnel. They were living securely in their homes when they fell victim to Israel’s crimes, and they left families behind. Are we allowed to shake off these families? The international community held a conference at Sharm el-Sheikh on rebuilding the Gaza Strip, which was destroyed by Israel. Just as you restore a house that was destroyed, you also need to pay the family of the Martyr who was killed unjustly by the Israeli Air Force. Likewise, most of the prisoners that Israel arrests are taken while living securely in their homes; in other words, they did not carry out any military activity or self-sacrificing activity (i.e., terror attack). The number of Palestinians in the Israeli prisons is over 7,000, and we provide material aid to their families because that is our obligation, and if we do not do this, what will be their fate? They are liable to turn to ISIS or any other extremist party. This emphasizes the significance of the inclusion we are providing, not only in the framewo
PA will raise payments to terrorists' families
Source: Al-Quds, Apr. 4, 2017
     "The Secretary-General of the [National] Association [of the Martyrs' Families of Palestine Muhammad Sbeihat] mentioned the issue of stopping the allowances (mukhassasat) of many of the civilian Martyrs' families (i.e., a few dozen families stopped receiving payments in February 2017, Ma'an [independent Palestinian news agency]) , and of some of the Martyrs' wives who married the Martyrs' brothers. He emphasized that the issue has been raised to [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, and that the Association and the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution are investing intensive efforts to deal with the issue as quickly as possible. He emphasized that Abbas and [PA] Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah are following the issue with the relevant parties, and expressed optimism about its resolution in a few days. He emphasized that in the upcoming period the allowances of the Martyrs' families will be linked to the cost of living index, which will cause an improvement in these allowances, if only slightly. He emphasized that the Association will continue its efforts and demands to improve the allowances of the Martyrs' families, and deal with the issue of the allowances of the families of the Martyrs of the Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip in 2014 (i.e., 2014 Gaza War)..."
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Official PA daily op-ed: Palestinian terrorists “can never be abandoned, they are not terrorists but fighters”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 1, 2017
Headline: "The [Palestinian] National Fund and Liberman's terror"

Excerpt of op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, regular columnist of the official PA daily

"[Israeli] Minister of War (sic., Defense) Avigdor Liberman demanded more than a week ago that the PLO [Palestinian] National Fund be considered a 'terrorist organization!' [What would he say] if they asked the minister of death (sic., defense): ‘On what basis did you make this statement? Did you check the summaries signed in the Oslo Accords? Do you know what the significance and status of the National Fund is within the PLO, which your government at the time recognized in Washington in 1993, and what the criteria of terror are? And what do you call the [Jewish] National Fund of the Jewish Agency (sic., the two organizations are not connected)? And what do you call the Zionist movement and your rebellious state? And what do you call yourself or how do you describe yourself, you who not long ago came from the remnants of the dismantled Soviet Union, at the beginning of the 1990s, to the land of Palestine as an occupier and thief?’

If the minister of war does not know the meaning of terror, it can be defined for him and for the Israeli colonialists like him: Terror is when a man, group, or state carries out an act of aggression (an explosion, bombing, kidnapping, or takeover) [parentheses in source] against other people anywhere in the world; or beginning a war against a people or members of a religion, ethnicity, or faith out of racial intent; or forcing the people to leave their homeland and stealing their property, lands, and homes, and that is the most severe form of global terror…

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Allowances to families of Martyrs significantly exceed pensions from PA National Security Forces
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Mar. 27, 2017
Headline: “A family calls on the [PA] president to move its wage earner’s salary to [be under] the Families of the Martyrs [and Wounded] Institution”
     “The family of late Alaa Al-Din Darwish Al-Qabbani (i.e., Fatah member who died of an illness) from the Bureij refugee camp in the center of the Gaza Strip asked [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas to act to move its wage earner’s salary (ratib) from the [PA] Insurance and Pension [Authority] to [be under] the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs [and Wounded] Institution.
The deceased’s son Aed Al-Qabbani said that his father worked in the [PA] National Security Forces at the rank of soldier until his death as a result of a medical error, and he left behind a family of 10 people, most of whom are children and school students.
The deceased’s son Al-Qabbani added: ‘We as a grief-stricken family were struck with shock when the [PA] Organization and Administration Bureau in Ramallah determined that our father is a Martyr (Shahid) but moved his allowances (mukhassasat) to the Insurance and Pension Authority, because the sum of this allowance does not exceed 850 [Israeli] shekels [per month], and does not cover the expenses of a family of 10 people.’
He asked the president to give an order to move his father’s salary from the Pension Authority to the Families of the Martyrs Institution.”
PA Minister of Labor: Despite major drop in foreign aid, "We will not stop anyone’s salary"
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Mar. 27, 2017
Headline: “[PA] Minister Abu Shahla spoke with Donia Al-Watan about the salaries, financial crisis, electricity, temporary positions, and early pension”
     “[PA] Minister of Labor Ma’moun Abu Shahla said that the [PA] national unity government has a monthly revenue of 900 million [Israeli] shekels, and its monthly expenditures exceed 1.15 billion shekels. He noted that the unity government suffers from a [monthly] financial deficit that stands at 250 million shekels.
Dr. Abu Shahla added in a special interview with [the independent Palestinian news agency] Donia Al-Watan: ‘Some think that the international aid reaches the Palestinian government continuously… There were promises that the aid would reach five billion [dollars], and it started to drop until in 2015 it reached approximately 700 million dollars, and in 2016 not even 450 million [dollars] reached us.’ …
Dr. Abu Shahla emphasized that the most important thing for the government is the timely payment of the salaries, as they must be paid on the first of the month, and the unity government has not been late [in paying] the salaries by even one day. Despite [the fact that] the government’s revenue mainly arrives from its own sources alongside the international aid that reaches 10% of the general budget; despite the ongoing pressure of the international community that it is not possible to pay the salaries of the [public] employees in Gaza who are not working; and despite the threats of the World Bank and the European Union to stop the economic aid for the salaries, the government has committed itself to pay all of the salaries, and we will not stop anyone’s salary.”
Families of "civilian Martyrs" complain about stopped payments
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Mar. 20, 2017
Headline: “The Association of the Martyrs’ Families demands to return to paying the allowances of two groups”

“The [PLO] National Association of the Martyrs’ Families of Palestine demanded to return to paying the monthly allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families whose allowances were stopped last month [February 2017].
The Association said after a meeting of the Association's general secretariat yesterday [March 19, 2017] that the allowances of dozens of families of the Martyrs defined as ‘civilian Martyrs’ have been stopped, along with some of the wives of Martyrs who married the brothers of their Martyr spouses.
The Association explained that the final number of families whose allowances have been stopped has not yet been determined, but that it could be much higher than this.
Secretary-General of the Association Muhammad Sbeihat briefed the members of the general secretariat regarding the latest developments in this matter, and also about the content of the phone conversation he had with [PA] Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah. He emphasized that Hamdallah showed great willingness to cooperate dealing with this issue, which he considers most important.”
PA official: Terrorist payments are a “national, moral and humanitarian responsibility,” PA will not give in to Israeli and US “extortion”
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Mar. 20, 2017
Headline: "Tayseer Khaled: The [PLO Palestinian] National Fund will continue in its commitments to the Palestinians"

"PLO Executive Committee member Tayseer Khaled emphasized that the [PLO] Palestinian National Fund will continue in its national and humanitarian commitments to the prisoners, Martyrs (Shahids), and wounded of Palestine, regardless of Israeli Minister of War (i.e., Defense) Avigdor Liberman's statements. He described these statements as part of an Israeli attempt to extort the Palestinian leadership and the PLO so that they will retreat from their commitments and from paying the allowances (mukhassasat) of the Martyrs' families, the Palestinian wounded and prisoners, and of all of the civilians that are suffering from the occupation’s terror, from its crimes, and from the terror of the settlers and their crimes.
Khaled noted in an interview with the media outlets that this position expresses the extent of the fascism and extremism that Liberman has reached in his behavior and positions.
He emphasized that these positions are unacceptable, irrelevant, and undeserving of discussion, and that they will have no effect on the position of the Palestinian side and the commitments of the National Fund to the prisoners, Martyrs, wounded, and their families.

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PLO official: Israeli parliamentarian’s accusation of PNF as terror organization considered an “aggressive and terrorist way of acting”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 20, 2017
Headline: "Ismail: Israel’s decision regarding the [Palestinian] National Fund is aggression and terror"

"PLO Executive Committee member Muhammad Ismail emphasized that [Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor] Liberman's latest statements, which accused the [PLO] Palestinian National Fund of terror, are part of a series of statements and attacks by the occupation government against the Palestinian people and its cause.
He explained that the National Fund is basically the treasury of the PLO, which is recognized by Israel as the representative of the Palestinian people. Ismail also explained yesterday [March 19, 2017] in an interview with Radio Mawtini that the occupation government does not have a right to accuse the National Fund of terror because of the mutual recognition between the PLO and Israel. He added that Israel's retreat from the signed agreements and its ignoring international decisions that have confirmed the right of the Palestinians to independence is considered an aggressive and terrorist way of acting."

On March 16, 2017, Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Liberman declared the Palestinian National Fund of the PLO a terrorist organization. The fund manages financial aid received by the PLO from different sources. The Israeli Ministry of Defense declare the fund a terror organization due to the fund's "massive support for elements responsible for committing severe acts of terrorism against Israel," and stated that the fund serves "as a significant financial pipeline for tens of millions of shekels that are transferred on a monthly basis to security prisoners held in Israel for committing acts of terrorism and to members of their families," and that "the fund also supports family members of terrorists who were wounded and killed while perpetrating acts of terrorism against Israel." It also stated that "the necessary steps will be taken, in Israel and abroad,
PA Ministry of Information: Israel “exceeds all terror,” is the “spiritual forefather of extremism and racism”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 20, 2017
Headline: "[PA] Ministry of Information: Liberman's declaration regarding the [Palestinian] National Fund is insolence"

"The [PA] Ministry of Information said that occupation [Israeli] Minister of War (sic., Defense) Avigdor Liberman’s declaration of the [PLO] Palestinian National Fund as a terrorist organization is the height of insolence and proof of political foolishness.
The ministry said in a statement: 'It would be more fitting for Liberman and all of the politicians in Israel to acknowledge that the occupation is an act that exceeds all terror, and that it is the spiritual forefather of extremism and racism.'
The ministry said that it thinks that Liberman's stupidity constitutes a continuation of the occupation state’s evasion of recognizing international law, and a desperate attempt to incite the world against the PLO and its mechanisms."

On March 16, 2017, Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Liberman declared the Palestinian National Fund of the PLO a terrorist organization. The fund manages financial aid received by the PLO from different sources. The Israeli Ministry of Defense declare the fund a terror organization due to the fund's "massive support for elements responsible for committing severe acts of terrorism against Israel," and stated that the fund serves "as a significant financial pipeline for tens of millions of shekels that are transferred on a monthly basis to security prisoners held in Israel for committing acts of terrorism and to members of their families," and that "the fund also supports family members of terrorists who were wounded and killed while perpetrating acts of terrorism against Israel." It also stated that "the necessary steps will be taken, in Israel and abroad, to seize and forfeit the property and money belonging to the fund.”
Palestinian Media Watch has documented that the
PA presidency: Palestinian National Fund not a terror organization, Israeli decision to blacklist it as such nullifies Oslo Accords’ “mutual recognition”
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 17, 2017
Headline: “The [PA] presidency: Liberman’s declaration that the Palestinian National Fund is a ‘terror organization’ is a basic violation of the Oslo Accords”

“The [PA] presidency said yesterday [March 16, 2017] that Israeli Minister of War (i.e., Defense) Avigdor Liberman’s declaration and statements, according to which the Palestinian National Fund is a terror organization, constitute a basic violation of the Oslo Accords that were signed between the PLO and Israel.
The presidency added in a press statement that the National Fund is one of the PLO institutions that fills its role according to the agreements that were signed and according to the international standards of full transparency, and is under international supervision.
The statement also said: ‘While the American administration is trying to create an atmosphere that will contribute to creating peace through its conversations with all of the sides and the presence of [US] President Donald Trump’s representative in the region, this declaration constitutes an Israeli attempt to thwart and destroy the American efforts and disparage them.’
The presidency said: ‘We reject this decision entirely and demand that the Israeli government immediately deal with this matter and take it back, because this will lead to an explosion of the foundations of the accords and the legal relations with Israel.’

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PA official alleges Israel is the source of terror; imprisoned Palestinian terrorists are “victims”
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Mar. 16, 2017
Headline: "Palestinian condemnation of Israel's decision to add the [Palestinian] National Fund to the 'terror' list"

"PLO Executive Committee member Wasel Abu Yusuf condemned the fact that Israeli Minister of War (sic. Defense) Avigdor Liberman added the Palestinian National Fund that belongs to the PLO to the 'terrorist organization' list, and warned that this step is an attempt to 'incite against the Palestinian leadership.'
Abu Yusuf said in a phone conversation with the [Turkish] news agency Anadolu that 'The struggle against the Israeli occupation is a legal right, and the victims and imprisoned during the Palestinian struggle against the occupation are protected by law.'
He added: 'The Palestinian National Fund is a national institution of the PLO, the legal representative of all of the Palestinians, and harming it means harming the whole body.'
He continued: 'The occupation is the source of the terror in the region, and we cannot accept these accusations.’"

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American rep warns Abbas that Congress intends to condition aid on cessation of PA incitement and payments to families of terrorists
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, Mar. 15, 2017
Headline: “Radio: Greenblatt warned Abbas about the American Congress’ intention to stop the financial aid to the PA”
     “Hebrew radio noted that Palestinian sources said that American [Special] Representative [for International Negotations] Jason Greenblatt warned Palestinian [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas about the American Congress’ intention to condition the continued provision of financial aid to the PA on stopping the incitement to terror, and on the PA stopping the provision of financial aid to the families of the resistance fighters…
In a statement of the [American] Consulate [in Jerusalem] it was said that Abbas expressed to the American representative his confidence in the possibility of achieving a historical peace under the patronage of [US] President Donald Trump.
The statement also added that Abbas ‘promised to fight incitement, violence, and terror.’”
Imprisoned terrorists, including killer of Israeli minister, receive university BA, against Israeli law
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 14, 2017
Headline: "Al-Quds Open University celebrates the graduation of two prisoners"
     "Al-Quds Open University and the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs yesterday [March 13, 2017] celebrated the graduation of prisoners Majdi Hussein Yusuf Al-Rimawi (i.e., terrorist, participated in murder of Israeli Minister of Tourism Rehavam Ze'evi) and Abd Al-Karim Al-Dayem Fayyad 'Khader' (PMW could not verify the nature of his crimes -Ed.), who are among the first students to graduate the university's program that is meant to provide an education to the prisoners.
The ceremony was held at the university's presidential building in Ramallah, in the presence of the prisoners' families and Director of Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake...
Prisoner Al-Rimawi is serving a life sentence, while prisoner Fayyad is serving an 18-year sentence. The two of them have been in the occupation's prisons since 2002."
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PLO Commission of Prisoners Affairs opens university program for imprisoned Palestinian terrorists, against Israeli law
Source: Al-Quds, Mar. 1, 2017
     "Director of the education department in the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Sayyaf Abu Saif yesterday [Feb. 29, 2016] announced the opening of registration for Al-Quds Open University, which will take place March 1 - 31, 2016. Abu Saif demanded that relatives of the prisoners in the Gilboa prison begin their children's registration, which will take place under the following conditions: A prisoner who is under arrest (i.e., who has not yet received a sentence) cannot register to this program, the prisoner must have a high school diploma recognized by the [PA] Ministry of Education and Higher Education in Ramallah, with an average of 85 or higher, a prisoner whose [prison] sentence is more than three years is allowed to register for the program, except for students for the Al-Quds Open University who can join regardless of the length of their [prison] sentence... The only specializations that can be registered for are social work, the Arab language, Islamic education, and social sciences."
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Prisoners in general and security prisoners in particular, are only allowed to conduct specific activities permitted to them by Israeli law and the rules of the Israeli Prison Service. In accordance with these, since 2011, security prisoners are no longer permitted to participate in degree courses. The PLO Commission of Prisoners' Affairs is funded by the Palestinian National Fund, which was declared a terror organization by Israel on March 16, 2017. PMW has notified the IPS that hundreds of Palestinian terrorist prisoners continue to study for academic degrees in spite of the ban.
Fatah official: Issue of payment of allowances to families of Martyrs of 2014 Gaza War to be raised
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Mar. 1, 2017
Headline: “Helles: The issue of the Martyrs’ families is on the table of the [Fatah] Central Committee”
     “Fatah Movement Central Committee member Ahmed Helles said today, Wednesday [March 1, 2017], that the issue of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) of the 2014 [Gaza] War, is on the list of priorities of the committee during its upcoming meeting. These statements were made during a meeting that included Fatah Movement Central Committee member Ahmed Helles, Fatah Movement Revolutionary Council member Dr. Fayez Abu Aita, [PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution Director Abu Joudeh Al-Nahal, Secretary-General of the Institution Maher Badawi, and Secretary and Media Spokesman of the Institution Alaa Al-Birawi… Al-Birawi said in an interview with a reporter from [the independent Palestinian news agency] Ma’an that Helles took the names and promised to raise the issue during the [Fatah] Central Committee’s meeting in order to put an end to their suffering… He explained that 1,943 families of Martyrs are expecting the end of their suffering through the payment of the allowances to the Martyrs’ [families], and noted that the sit-in strike tent opposite the Families of the Martyrs [and Wounded] Institution building will remain until this issue ends completely.”
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US senators submit bill to cut off aid due to PA funding of terror
Source: Palestine News Network (PNN, independent Palestinian news agency), Mar. 1, 2017
Headline: "A bill in the American Senate to stop the funding for the PA"
     "Three American senators from the Republican Party submitted a new bill that calls on the American administration to stop all forms of American financial aid to the PA.
The Republican senators justified the decision by claiming that the PA funds what they called 'terror.'
Previous attempts to legislate this met strong opposition and were tabled. However, the senators who are now submitting the current bill believe that this legislation will win broad support in addition to the support of [US] President [Donald] Trump.
Senator Lindsey Graham from the state of South Carolina, the main initiator of this legislation, said in an interview with the Hebrew newspaper Haaretz: 'The fact that the PA funds those carrying out armed attacks was already brought up for discussion during [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s meeting with Trump in the White House last month [February 2017]’ (for actual quote see note below –Ed.)."

American Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was paraphrased by Haaretz as saying: “The legislation was brought up during the meeting last month between U.S. President Donald Trump and [Israeli] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”
Senators submit bill calling on US to stop financial aid to PA
Source: Palestine News Network (PNN, independent Palestinian news agency), Mar. 1, 2017
Headline: "A bill in the American Senate to stop the funding for the PA"
     "Three American senators from the Republican Party submitted a new bill that calls on the American administration to stop all forms of American financial aid to the PA.
The Republican senators justified the decision by claiming that the PA funds what they called 'terror.'
Previous attempts to legislate this met strong opposition and were tabled. However, the senators who are now submitting the current bill believe that this legislation will win broad support in addition to the support of [US] President [Donald] Trump.
Senator Lindsey Graham from the state of South Carolina, the main initiator of this legislation, said in an interview with the Hebrew newspaper Haaretz: 'The fact that the PA funds those carrying out armed attacks was already brought up for discussion during [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s meeting with Trump in the White House last month [February 2017]’ (for actual quote see note below –Ed.)."

American Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was paraphrased by Haaretz as saying: “The legislation was brought up during the meeting last month between U.S. President Donald Trump and [Israeli] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”
PA transfers $1.3 billion to Gaza per year, of which $82 million to families of Martyrs, prisoners and wounded
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 28, 2017
     “[PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas’] Advisor on Strategic Affairs Dr. Husam Zomlot… emphasized that the PA is transferring approximately $1.3 billion a year to the Gaza Strip, most of which goes to covering the salaries that stand at approximately $840 million a year. This is in addition to $100 million for aid to socially poor families, and $82 million for the allowances (mukhassasat) of [the families of] the Martyrs (Shahids), of the prisoners, and of the wounded [in Gaza].”
PFLP member: PA reduction of public salaries to Gazan employees is in responce to international pressure, might harm salaries to terrorists and their families
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Feb. 5, 2017
    “Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) member Rabbah Mahana said in an interview with the [independent Palestinian] news agency Wattan that the fact that the PA has reduced the salaries of the [public] employees in Gaza is a most dangerous step… He explained that this step comes as a response by [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the [PA] national unity government to the American and Israeli pressures. Mahana added that in due course this step is likely to cause harm to the salaries (rawatib) of the families of the Martyrs (Shahids), prisoners, and wounded, as a response by the PA to pressures [exerted regarding these salaries] as well… PLO Executive Committee member [and Palestinian Popular Struggle Front Secretary-General] Ahmed Majdalani declared to Arab newspapers that the latest deductions from the salaries of the government employees in the Gaza Strip were carried out after an agreement with the European Union. Majdalani confirmed that this step was as part of the financial reforms that the European Union has demanded in order to continue supporting the PA budget. There are 25,000 PA civilian employees and an unknown number of [PA] Security Forces employees, and the total of their salaries stands at $45 million.”

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PLO official admits US aid to PA goes toward paying terrorists
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Feb. 5, 2017
Headline: "The PA rejects the possibility that the American aid will be stopped"

"Palestinian [PLO] Ambassador to Washington Maen Erekat rejected the possibility that the American aid to the PA would be stopped during the term of the new American administration led by [US President] Donald Trump.
Erekat said to [the independent Palestinian news] agency Ma'an: 'Whatever the administration may be, the US believes that the aid it gives to the Palestinians is very important, and it is unlikely that the Trump administration will stop it since this aid serves to improve the Palestinian people’s living conditions and economy.'
However, Erekat discussed the possibility that this aid would be reduced or have additional conditions imposed on it, and predicted that the amount of the American aid to the PA for 2017 would be declared within a number of days.
Erekat said that the Trump administration has officially notified the PA that it wants to conduct a legal review of the $221 million that the Obama administration decided to transfer to the PA just hours before it left and passed the reins of government to Trump.
He added that the Trump administration wants to know if the transfer decision is consistent with the conditions and laws regarding the American aid to the Palestinians…
The amount of American aid to the PA during 2016 was approximately $380 million, but the [transfer of] $221 million of it was stopped following the opposition of two American congressmen to this aid.
The US has stopped the aid to the PA in the past because of the fact that the PA supports the Palestinian prisoners through this aid."
Reports: Obama administration transferred $221 million to the PA in its final hours
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Jan. 24, 2017
Headline: “In his final decisions, Obama gave the PA $221 million””

“Senior American officials revealed that the administration of previous [US] President Barack Obama secretly transferred to the PA a sum totaling $221 million in its final hours.
The AP [news] agency quoted sources in the American administration as saying that this was aid whose transfer to the Palestinians was prevented by the Republican party (i.e., by Republican members of Congress due to the PA’s unilateral moves to join international organizations, in violation of the 1993 Oslo Accords).
However, the Obama administration transferred the monies while bypassing the opposition of the Republicans, and informed Congress of the plans to transfer the sum last Friday morning [Jan. 20, 2017], a few hours before the beginning of [US President] Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony. One of the senior officials said that previous American Secretary of State John Kerry informed several members of Congress about this step immediately after he left the American State Department on Thursday evening, but the written announcement on this matter only reached Congress on Friday morning…
The Congress originally agreed to send the aid to the Palestinians as part of the American State Department budget for the fiscal year of 2015/2016, but a number of the Republican members of Congress, including Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee [Ed Royce] and Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee (sic., House Appropriations Committee member Kay Granger ), succeeded in delaying the process of transferring the money, after the PA tried to obtain membership in a number of international organizations.”

PMW note: According to media reports, the transfer of the $221 million has been frozen and is under review by the Trump administration.
PLO official is committed to caring for "pure hearted Martyrs," notes that allowances have yet to be paid to families of those killed in 2014 Gaza war
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 9, 2017
Headline: "Al-Wazir on Martyrs' Day: We renew the promise of loyalty to the Martyrs and injured"
     "Chairwoman of the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and Wounded Institution Intisar Al-Wazir said for Palestinian Martyrs' Day… that all of the employees of the Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution, which was established in 1965, are fulfilling their obligation and making the maximum efforts in the framework of the existing capabilities to ensure the necessary care and services for the families of the Martyrs and wounded. This is because our pure-hearted Martyrs and our brave wounded, who sacrificed their lives and their blood for the homeland, are deserving of this care. She clarified that they are working to provide the necessary budget for payment [of allowances] to the families of the Martyrs of the last war on the Gaza Strip (i.e., 2014 Gaza War). She wished that it happen as soon as possible."
PA minister claims 550 million shekels have been paid to families of those killed in Gaza war, more would be paid if not for shortage in international aid
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 8, 2017
Headline: “Marking Palestinian Martyrs Day in Gaza – Al-Agha: A national strategy is needed…”

“During the [Palestinian] Martyrs’ Day ceremony that was held by the National Committee of Martyrs’ (Shahids) Relatives and the [PLO] National Association of the Martyrs’ Families [of Palestine]… PLO Executive Committee member Zakariya Al-Agha gave a speech…
Al-Agha referred to the suffering of the Martyrs’ family members in everything related to the payment of their allowances (mukhassasat), and particularly the families of the Martyrs of 2014 (those killed in the 2014 Gaza War –Ed.) He noted that the time has come to put an end to this suffering, and called on [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas to make his decision, even though it is known that the financial situation of the PLO and PA is difficult. [Al-Agha added that] despite this, the Martyrs are a red line, and it is necessary to start finding appropriate solutions, when in the first stage, it is possible to pay an allowance of one Martyr to each family, while the transfer of the rest of the allowances will be completed if the financial situation of the PA improves…
[PA] Minister of Labor Ma’moun Abu Shahla gave a speech on behalf of [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, in which he conveyed the blessings of the government to the families of the Martyrs…
He saluted all of the Martyrs of Palestine, and at their head Martyr Yasser Arafat, and noted that... 550