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PA salaries to terrorists and their familes
PA salaries to terrorists and their familes
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:‎

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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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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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.”
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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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.

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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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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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.”
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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[Click full article for more information]
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].”
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 million (Israeli) shekels have been paid to the families of the Martyrs in Gaza out of 18 billion shekels [that were transferred] in the fields of health, education, welfare, electricity, water, sewage, and more. He said that if not for the scanty capabilities, the shortage in international aid, and the continuation of the rift (i.e., between Fatah and Hamas), the situation would be better.”
Despite austerity measures due to decreased foreign aid, PA payments in salaries projected to increase by 3.1% 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 4, 2017
     “The [PA] government continued to discuss the general budget proposal of the State of Palestine for the 2017 financial year. According to the forecasts, the gross income will stand at 13.72 billion [Israeli] shekels (25.6% of the GDP) [parentheses in source], that is to say an increase of 6% compared to 2016…
The net total of expenses and loans is expected to reach 16.1 billion shekels in 2017, an increase of just 1% compared to 2016. The cost of salaries and wages is expected to reach 8.1 billion shekels (15.1% of the GDP) [parentheses in source], an increase of 3.1% compared to 2015 (sic., should be 2016)…
According to these figures, the joint deficit is expected to reach 2.76 billion shekels, a decrease of 18% compared to 2016. Together with the expected development projects, whose cost is 1.36 billion shekels, the total deficit is expected to reach 4.12 billion shekels, a decrease of 9% compared to 2016.
Regarding the foreign funding supporting the budget, it is not expected to exceed $500 million, and $92 million for funding development projects through the treasury’s coffers.
Regarding paying the debt balances, $300 million will be allocated for payment of the debt balances to the private sector. Therefore, as a result of the great decrease in the foreign funding for the budget, the funding gap will stand at $765 million, which will obligate the government to take austerity measures in all fields.”

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PLO official: Decision to move US embassy to Jerusalem is an "attack on the peace process and pushing the region towards extremism and violence" 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 29, 2016
Headline: “Erekat: 2016 was a Palestinian year par excellence, and we hope that the occupation will end next year”
     “PLO Executive Committee Secretary[-General] Saeb Erekat said: ‘The present year [2016] was a Palestinian year par excellence. We anticipate that the will of the Palestinian people and leadership will be realized, and that 2017 will be the year of the end of the occupation.’ …
He said that the election of Donald Trump as president of the US, his decision to appoint David Friedman as the US ambassador to Israel, and the decision to transfer the American embassy to Jerusalem all mean an attack on the peace process and pushing the region towards extremism and violence…
Advisor to [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] for Strategic Affairs Husam Zumlut said that 2016 was the year of preparation for the resolution, while 2017 will be the year of the political showdown against the Israeli occupation and the year of the end of the rift (i.e., between Fatah and Hamas).”
PA Minister of Finance: US legislation on PA salaries to imprisoned terrorists will limit management of PA bank accounts in the US 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 27, 2016
Headline: “The [PA] minister of finance presented the budget proposal to the parliament factions and bodies”
     “[PA] Minister of Finance and Planning Shukri Bishara presented the general outline of the 2017 budget to the representatives of the parliamentary factions and a number of members of the PA Parliament (Legislative Council) in Ramallah… He explained that the American Congress has legislated six laws that define the PA as criminal arguing that it supports the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, and these laws will have consequences if they are adopted, as they will limit the ability to manage the Palestinian [bank] accounts in the US and abroad.”
Martyrs of 2014 Gaza War to receive payments from the PA 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 22, 2016
“[PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution Chairwoman Intisar Al-Wazir ‘Um Jihad’ said that the institution has completed all of the administrative procedures – preparing the files, opening bank accounts, and checking the social background – for all of the Martyrs (Shahids) of the last war against the Gaza Strip (i.e., 2014 Gaza war).
Al-Wazir added that currently the institution is waiting for the allocation of the needed budget for payment of the allowances (mukhassasat), which it is anticipated and hoped will be included in the 2017 budget. She noted that the leadership, led by His Honor [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, is making every effort to realize this. She emphasized that since the outbreak of the Palestinian revolution in 1965, the Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution presents its services to all of the Palestinians without exception, everywhere they are located in the homeland and in the diaspora.

[Click full article for more information]
Families of Martyrs of 2014 Gaza War say they have not received their salaries yet  
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Dec. 13, 2016
Headline: "Several members of the Martyrs' families broke into the Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution in Gaza"
     "Several members of the Martyrs' (Shahids') families broke into the [PLO] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution in the Gaza Strip today (Tuesday) [Dec. 13, 2016] for several hours. They left after they received promises that their salaries (rawatib) will be paid next May [2017].
Spokesman for the Martyrs' families Alaa Al-Barawi told [the independent Palestinian news agency] Ma'an that approximately 700 families of Martyrs broke in to the institution, where Director of the [Families of the Martyrs and Wounded] Institution Intisar Al-Wazir was, and demanded that the salaries of the families of the Martyrs of the 2014 [Gaza] war - 1,943 families - be paid. Al-Barawi blamed Director of the Institution Intisar Al-Wazir for what he defined as procrastination in solving the problem of the salaries of the Martyrs' families. He emphasized that she bears the full responsibility for the non-payment of their financial allowances (mukhassasat)… It should be noted that the members of the Martyrs' families are holding a sit-in strike every Tuesday in front of the offices of the Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution, in order to press for a solution to their problem which has been pending for several years. Members of the Martyr's families emphasize that [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] decided to recognize them [as members of Martyrs' families], while the institution is procrastinating in the implementation of the decision."

Director of Commission of Prisoners' Affairs reaffirms PA's commitment to support terrorists and their families 
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Dec. 7, 2016
Headline: “Karake: The leadership continues to support the families of the prisoners and Martyrs and provide for them”
     “Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake denied the reports of several media outlets about a cutback in the allowances of the prisoners’ families. He emphasized that this news item is completely unfounded, and that the PA and the Palestinian leadership continue to support the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and the prisoners, to provide for them, and to express loyalty to them in accordance with the customary regulations and laws.
Karake said that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, in his historic speech before the Seventh Fatah Conference, emphasized the continuation of the support for the prisoners’ families, for the prisoners in prison, and for the released prisoners, and continuation of the efforts to release the prisoners.”
484 terrorist prisoners study for BA degrees in Al-Quds Open University program, in cooperation with PA Ministry of Education and paid for by PLO 
Source: The Al-Quds Open University Message (university newspaper), Dec. 1, 2016
      "Al-Quds Open University recently opened a prisoners' study program within the [Israeli] prisons, and the number of prisoners who joined it has reached 484 prisoners within three months. Likewise, the forecast is that this number will rise to 600 prisoners by the end of the current year [2017], with another prison joining the program...
It should be noted that approximately 260 students are currently studying as part of the program at the Ktzi'ot Prison, 163 at the Rimon Prison, and 61 at the Gilboa Prison. This is while the university is currently examining a file that was submitted on behalf of the Eshel Prison, and if it is agreed on, the number of students will reach approximately 600 at the end of the current year...
[Director-General of the study program in the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs Muhammad] Al-Batta noted that the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs is the one funding this program through the payment of tuition. He also thanked the Al-Quds Open University administration for providing special discounts for the prisoners. On everything regarding the future plans for developing the program, Al-Batta said: 'We hope that the conditions in all of the prisons will allow this, so that we will be able to open similar programs in them.'"
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December 2016 issue of The Al-Quds Open University Message, the university's newspaper. 
Terrorist sponsors tablets for children of Martyrs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 23, 2016
"Yesterday, the family of Martyr (Shahid) Nasser Al-Faroukh and prisoner Issam Al-Faroukh [Nov. 22, 2016] gave tablets [computers] to 30 male and female students from among the children of Martyrs in Ramallah.
The charity event was held under the auspices of the National Association of the Martyrs' Families [of Palestine], in the presence of [PA] Minister [of Education and Higher Education] Sabri Saidam, Head of the [PA] Environmental Protection Authority Adalah Al-Atira, and many children of the Martyrs and prisoners from all districts of the homeland.
This generous donation of prisoner [Issam] Al-Faroukh is from his personal salary, and the Environmental Protection Authority also gave many symbolic presents as an expression of its love for the Martyrs and their children.
The minister of education and higher education said: 'This is a new Palestinian opus written in letters of light by this genuine Palestinian family, which has sacrificed a Martyr and a prisoner, and of its own will gives gifts to our children, the students…'
Al-Atira emphasized that this is the minimum that can be given, and that it does not compare to even a part of the suffering of the Martyrs who chose the path of light for us."

Nasser Al-Faroukh - PMW has been unable to verify details about Nasser Al-Faroukh’s death.

Issam Al-Faroukh - Palestinian terrorist and member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades (Fatah’s military wing) who, together with Palestinian terrorist and fellow Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades member Muhammad Saidi, murdered Israeli civilian Maryk Gavrielov in Ramallah in October 2000. Al-Faroukh is serving a life sentence.
29 released prisoners complain they haven't gotten their salaries from the PA due to political reasons 
Source: Wattan (independent Palestinian news agency)‎, Nov. 17, 2016
Headline: "29 released prisoners are not receiving a salary! – And the Independent Commission for Human Rights adopts their issue"
       "It has been several years now that 29 released prisoners are not receiving their salaries [that they are entitled to] as released prisoners according to Palestinian law, which states that any prisoner who was imprisoned for more than 5 years has a right to a monthly salary of a certain amount.
Sufian Jamjoum (45) from Hebron, one of the released prisoners whose salaries have not been paid since 2007… told a journalist of the Ma'an [independent Palestinian news] agency: ‘The PA does not have a realistic and justified excuse to stop paying me the prisoners' salary since 2007.’
Released prisoner Jamjoum sat in the occupation's prison for 20 years, and his last imprisonment was a year and a half ago. He added that his issue and the issue of the prisoners whose salary payment was stopped is political par-excellence, as most of them belong to the Hamas movement, and the decision not to pay their salaries was made by the [PA] government in 2007 as a result of the rift (i.e., between Hamas and Fatah, see note)..."

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt from the article
PA stops salaries of Gaza PA employees who support Abbas’ political opponents  
Source: Safa, independent news agency, Nov. 2, 2016
     Headline: “In an initial response to the stopping of the salaries of dozens of [PA government] employees, Abbas Zaki calls on the president to reinstate their salaries”
“In an initial response from a senior leadership official in Fatah to the news items that were reported about the [PA] Ministry of Finance having stopped the salaries of dozens of employees in the [PA] Security Forces [in the Gaza Strip] claiming that they support leadership member and [PA] Parliament member Muhammad Dahlan (i.e., former leader who was expelled from Fatah), Fatah Central Committee member [and Fatah Commissioner for Arab and China Relations] Abbas Zaki called on [PA] President [Mahmoud] Abbas to reinstate the salaries of those whose salaries were recently cancelled, and likewise to reinstate all of the cancelled salaries…
Palestinian sources noted this evening [Nov. 2, 2016] that the PA until now has stopped the salaries of dozens of PA employees claiming that they support Parliament Member Muhammad Dahlan…
The sources said that as a first stage the salaries were stopped for dozens of Dahlan’s supporters, who were surprised that their salaries did not appear in the bank. In the coming months the salaries of additional [Dahlan] supporters will be stopped gradually, and the final list includes 2,000 PA employees, according to the claim of these sources.”
PA asked employees in Gaza not to work and still get paid, but won’t allow them to leave Gaza 
Source: Sama, independent Palestinian news agency, Sept. 17, 2016
Headline: “What is not discussed in Gaza”

Op-ed by Riyad Al-Hassan, former Chairman of both the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation Board of Trustees and the official PA WAFA news agency

“The WAFA [official PA news agency] administration made an unjust decision against some of its employees in Gaza, under the pretext that they have moved to Egypt or other states, and stopped payment of their salaries and conditioned the continuation of their salaries on their return, otherwise they will be fired. I do not really know if there is a clause in the law or a regulation that prevents an employee in Gaza from moving to live outside of [Gaza]. What I know is that the relations between the PA and its employees are conditional relations – work for a salary. After the coup (i.e., Hamas takeover in 2007), a special situation was created for the employees in Gaza, which cancelled the same conditional relations and even turned it around, as the PA asked its employees not to work in return for receiving a salary. The employees accepted the PA’s demand and stopped working in order to guarantee the continued payment of their salaries. The question is – as long as we do not want these employees to work, and have no connection with them, why do we demand that they return? Logically, what is the message we are sending to them? Is it not: ‘Return to Gaza in order to do nothing!?’

Details of specific cases of these employees show that WAFA’s decision is not only an absurd step, but a most damaging step. For instance, one of these employees was arrested a number of times by the Hamas security forces in 2009, and they again persecuted him in 2010, and he had no choice but to secretly enter Egypt through the tunnels, where he succeeded in getting by and invited his wife to live with him in Cairo with his modest salary (i.e., from the PA). Is it permissible to force him to return to Gaza in o
Red Cross cuts funding for second monthly visit for families of prisoners; PA will cover cost instead 
Source: Donia Al-Watan (independent Palestinian news agency), Aug. 9, 2016
Headline: "Fares: The president signed on covering the expenses of the second monthly visit of prisoners' relatives"
     "Chairman of the [PA-funded] Palestinian Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares revealed that [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas signed a resolution to cover the costs of the second monthly visit of the prisoners’ families with their sons in the Israeli prisons.
Fares said today, Tuesday [Aug. 9, 2016] in an interview with Radio Mawtini: 'After the Red Cross reduced the visits and limited them to once a month, the president signed a resolution to cover the expenses of the second visit of the prisoners’ families with their sons in the occupation state's prisons.' Likewise, he spoke about a conditional agreement which the Palestinian government and the Red Cross will sign, according to which the government will cover all of the expenses of the second visit, on condition that the Red Cross will continue to obtain permits from the Israeli side."
Gazan workers’ salaries too low to encourage young interest in local job market 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Aug. 3, 2016
     Official PA TV program Workers’ Affairs, on the problems of unemployment in Gaza, employment alternatives found by young people in Gaza, and the emigration of young people from the region.
According to PA law, the PA pays competitive salaries to imprisoned Palestinian terrorists that increase
based on the length of time in prison. Through this law, the PA provides a clear reward system for those who commit attacks against Israelis. By contrast, Gazans who work hard to earn academic degrees and cannot find work or receive low salaries are given no comparable reward or support from the PA.
Studio audience member participating in the program Ayoub Al-Qaisi: “There is a problem: Even if there are work opportunities, the salary will be very low. In other words, it takes a young person who finishes studies at the age of 22-23 three to four years afterwards to [find] work in a simple job or as a laborer and to be able to take care of his family’s future.”
Official PA TV host: “A low salary, in other words, what is the range?”
Al-Qaisi: “A daily or monthly salary - the monthly [salary] is roughly 1,000 [Israeli] shekels and the daily salary is around 30 shekels, in other words the [minimum] limit.”
Abbas advisor defends PA payments to terrorists before Congress: "This is the right of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners" 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 18, 2016
Headline: “Zumlut: The Israeli lobby is behind the deterioration of the situation in Palestine”
     “Advisor to [PA] President [Mahmoud Abbas] for Strategic Affairs Husam Zumlut held the extremist Israeli lobby in Washington responsible for the deterioration of the situation in the Palestinian territories by encouraging the occupation, the policy of colonialism, and the creation of [a cover of] defense for the occupation soldiers and settlers to carry out many types of violence and organized terror against our people...
During the speech he gave before American Congress members in Washington in response to the invitation of the Congress’ Foreign Relations Committee, Zumlut emphasized that ‘The extremist Israeli lobby is involved in methodical forgery of the facts and carrying out political blackmail as part of a pre-planned agenda, whose goal is to thwart the opportunities for peace and fight the regional and international elements striving to achieve it…
As part of his response to a question about Congress’ proposed resolution calling for the cessation of financial aid to the Palestinian government due to the government’s payments to the families of Martyrs (Shahids) and prisoners, Zumlut said: ‘This is a Palestinian law, in force since the establishment of the PA, and it is a law that applies to everyone detained by Israel without exception or choice.’ Likewise, he emphasized: ‘This is the right of the families of the Martyrs and the prisoners, and the obligation of the Palestinian government to provide a security plan that will provide a dignified life in the absence of the breadwinner.’”

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Official PA daily calls 223 terrorists killed during Palestinian terror wave between October 2015 – January 2016 “martyrs” 
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, July 2, 2016
       “The Abdallah Al-Hourani Center for Research and Documentation, which is connected to the PLO, said in its report on the Israeli violations that the Israeli occupation forces killed 78 citizens and demolished 620 houses and buildings in the first half of 2016… And so, the number of Martyrs since the outbreak of the popular uprising (‎‎Palestinian euphemism for several months of Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis 2015 - 2016 -Ed.) at the beginning of last October [2015] has risen to 223.”

Palestinian terror wave (2015-2016) – Palestinian violence and terror attacks against Israelis, ‎including stabbings, shootings, throwing Molotov cocktails, and car rammings. It started in September 2015 and as of July 12, 2016, Palestinian terrorists murdered 40 people (36 Israelis, 1 Palestinian, 2 Americans, and 1 foreign worker from Eritrea) and injured over 500.

PA TV reports on proposal to increase salaries to imprisoned “Martyrs” (i.e., terrorists) 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 19, 2016
Secretary-General of the National Association of the Martyrs' Families of Palestine Muhammad Sbeihat: “We are optimistic regarding what [PA] Prime Minister [Rami Hamdallah] said, because we met with him in recent weeks and we requested to increase the allowances of the Martyrs’ (Shahids) families, the monthly allowances… There is understanding from all sides. Even the [PA] Ministry of Finance knows that the current allowance, or the base allowance, that stands at 1,400 shekels a month, is very low. This amount was determined and implemented in mid-2011, which is to say around five years ago... There is understanding on the part of the [PA] Ministry of Finance regarding this demand. However, the discussion is currently revolving around the exact amount…The [PA] Ministry of Finance says that there is no allocation in the 2016 budget to increase the allowances, because this is supposed to start at the beginning of next year [2017], but on the other hand the [PLO’s] Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution says that there is a surplus in the budget and therefore we can start implementing this [increase] before the end of the year… The Palestinian Authority gives allowances to roughly 30,000 families of Martyrs and wounded inside the homeland and in the diaspora.”

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt from the segment
PA Prime Minister: “The [PA] government and PLO institutions... will continue to act to improve the allowances of Martyrs’ families as soon as possible” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 18, 2016
Headline: “[PA Prime Minister Rami] Hamdallah: We will continue to act to improve the allowances of Martyrs’ (Shahids) families”
     “[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah emphasized that the government and PLO institutions involved in the matter will continue to act to improve the allowances of Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families as soon as possible, and that they are acting to ensure that the rights of the Martyrs’ families will not be harmed, even in the shadow of the financial crises and difficulties that are shaking them (i.e., the government and PLO institutions). He emphasized that we will make an effort to improve their living conditions, and that services are continuing to be provided in the homeland and abroad on the basis of justice and equality, with no discrimination. The statements were made while he [Hamdallah] participated in the central fast-breaking mass meal honoring the families of Palestine’s Martyrs, held in Ramallah… The Prime Minister stated: ‘First of all, while we remember today the execution of Martyr commanders Muhammad Jamjoum, Fuad Hijazi, and Ataa Al-Zir in the Acre Prison in 1930, allow me to ask Allah to have mercy on the souls of the Martyrs of Palestine, who are more honored than all of us. [Allow me] to salute with honor and appreciation their family members, with whom we are meeting again today.”

Muhammad Jamjoum, Fuad Hijazi, and Ataa Al-Zir “committed particularly brutal murders [of Jews] at Safed and Hebron,” according to the report by British Government to the League of Nations. They were convicted of attacking British soldiers and murdering Jews in the 1929 Hebron Massacre, in which 65 Jews were murdered. They were executed by the British in 1930.
Released Palestinian prisoners have not received allowances from the PA for the past three years, following international pressure  
Source: Gulf News, May 24, 2016
Headline: "Former Palestinian prisoners ‘deprived of allowances’"
Sub-headline:" Israel and Western countries applying pressure on PNA not to give allowances to ‘terrorists’"
      "Ramallah: Dozens of released Palestinian prisoners who had served decades in Israeli regime jails have not received their allowances for the past three years, said a senior Palestinian official. According to Eisa Qaraqei [Issa Karake, Ed.], who heads the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, the Palestinian consensus government must solve the issue of the long-delayed salaries of the former prisoners with immediate effect. 'Long delays have devastated the lives of many ex-prisoners who served more than 20 years behind Israeli bars,” he told Gulf News. “The longer the salaries are delayed, the more former prisoners and families suffer and find it rather difficult to survive.'...
According to Palestinian law, once a Palestinian is arrested by the Israeli occupation forces, the PNA starts granting him 1,400 Shekels a month; the prisoner’s salary increases to 2,000 Shekels once the prisoner reaches two years in prison, 4,000 Shekels after five years in prison and jumps to 6,000 Shekels when the prisoner reaches ten years in prison. The scheme for those who serve more than five years in Israeli jails even enhances when they are released, but those who are released before five years of imprisonment receive only a financial aid of six months’ allowance as lump sum. No further assistance is given."

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt from the article and refrences to PMW activities
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs: “Israel and a number of Western countries [are] trying to revoke the prisoners’ financial rights on the pretext that they engaged in ‘terror’... in order to negate their being fighters” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 22, 2016
Headline: “In its new conference – the Prisoners’ Club demands to unite the national discourse regarding the prisoners’ cause”
PMW note: Palestinian Media Watch has presented in US Congress and in many European parliaments its findings on PA rewarding imprisoned terrorists with salaries.
      “During its fifth conference, titled The Late Released Prisoner and Leader Rabiha Dhiab (i.e., former PA Minister of Women’s Affairs who recently died) Session, the Prisoners’ Club emphasized that the national discourse on everything regarding the prisoners’ cause must be united… Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake discussed a number of matters regarding the prisoners, including… the offense being led by Israel and a number of Western countries, who are trying to revoke the prisoners’ financial rights on the pretext that they engaged in ‘terror,’ as they call it, in order to negate their being fighters, in addition to the importance of tendering prisoner leader Marwan Barghouti’s candidacy for the Nobel Peace Prize and the significance inherent in doing so, which can legitimize the Palestinian struggle.”

Marwan Barghouti - serving 5 life sentences for orchestrating three shooting attacks that killed 5 people: one in Jerusalem (June 12, 2001, 1 killed), another in Givat Zeev near Jerusalem (Jan. 15, 2002, 1 killed), and one in Tel Aviv (March 5, 2002, 3 killed). When arrested in 2002, he headed the Tanzim (Fatah terror faction). After he was convicted and imprisoned, he was re-elected member of the Palestinian Authority parliament.
PA minister: the PA "employs twice as many employees as it needs," international community demands that it reduce number of workers 
Source: Amad, independent Palestinian news website, May 22, 2016
Headline: “Abu Shahla: The international community demanded that the government reduce the number of Palestinian [state] employees”
     “Palestinian Minister of Employment Ma’moun Abu Shahla revealed that the international community has demanded of the Palestinian government that it reduce the number of current employees.
Abu Shahla stated in a press conference he held in the city of Gaza in order to update journalists regarding recent government developments that ‘the Palestinian government is suffering from functional weakness at the moment, and the international community has demanded a reduction in the number of its current employees.’
He added: ‘PA Minister of Finance Shoukry Bishara requests loans from all over every month in order to pay the employees’ salaries,’ and noted that the Palestinian government ‘currently employs twice as many employees as it needs.’
Abu Shahla continued: ‘The political capital of 5 billion dollars a year which the PA is supposed to be receiving since the Oslo Agreements in 1994 has begun to decline, until it reached 760 million dollars last year. He clarified: ‘We expected to receive 1.2 billion in external aid last year, but what we received was not more than 760 million dollars.’
He noted: ‘This year’s signs indicate that we will see a decline in external aid,’ and commented that all of this ‘constitutes general pressure whose aim is to cause political concessions, but it will not succeed.’”
PA Ministry of Finance owes released prisoners 9 million dollars, but isn’t paying them despite Abbas’ decision 
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, May 10, 2016
     Headline: "Karake: The sum of the unpaid release grants is 9 million dollars"
"Director of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that the sum of the release grants due the released prisoners is 9 million dollars, and that the [PA] Ministry of Finance has not paid them in many years, 'which has created a situation of bitterness and anger among the prisoners released from the occupation's prisons.' (Released terrorists who have been imprisoned in Israel more than 5 years continue to receive a salary from the PA upon their release. Terrorists who have served less than five years receive a lump sum upon release. –Ed.)
Karake noted that there are instructions from the president [Mahmoud Abbas], the prime minister [Rami Hamdallah], and the head of the Palestinian National Fund [Ramzi Khoury] to pay the release grants according to the law, but that this has not been done until now.
He explained that about 3,000 male and female prisoners that have been released in recent years – some of whom served more than 15 years – need this grant in order to begin civilized and human lives after long years in prison.
Karake demanded that the relevant bodies regarding this matter 'solve this problem, which has created a negative atmosphere among the released [prisoners].'
Karake spoke of this during a meeting with released prisoners in the Nablus district and visits he made to a number of released prisoners in the Tulkarem district."
Abbas confirms main charge of PMW's new report - that the PA is still paying salaries to terrorists - in meeting with Norwegian Foreign Minister 
Source: Dagen (Norway), May 4, 2016
Headline: “The support program for prisoners is unacceptable”
“In a meeting with [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas, Norway's Foreign Minister Børge Brende stressed that the current support program for prisoners should be abolished.
Foreign Minister Brende (Conservatives) is on a new tour of the Middle East. Tuesday afternoon and evening, he had meetings first with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem and then with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah...
‘In the meeting, I emphasized that this support program in which financial payments are increased the [longer] the prisoners serve time [in prison], is unacceptable and should be abolished. I emphasized that with the political and economic challenges that Palestinians now face, it is in their own best interest to abolish this program,’ says Brende.
Abbas responded by repeating assurances that Norwegian funds are not going to finance the program. This is something Brende too continues to emphasize.
‘Norwegian support to Palestine goes to state building and institutional development, which everyone is interested in continuing. This is also stressed by the Israeli authorities,’ said the Foreign Minister to Dagen.”
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PMW report on PA salaries to terrorists debated in Norway. Norway’s Foreign Ministry knows the PA still pays salaries, MPs object 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), Apr. 24, 2016

NRK TV reporter Tormod Strand: "Malki [Roth] only reached the age of 15 because a Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up at this pizza shop in Jerusalem in 2001. 15 civilians were murdered. The person responsible for making the bomb, Abdallah Barghouti, is imprisoned in an Israeli jail. Palestine honors hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, among them many terrorists, with a monthly salary. Every month, Abdallah Barghouti receives about ten thousand Norwegian kroner from Palestine. The worse the terror, the higher salary the prisoners receive. NRK TV reported on [PMW's report] about this [PA] program in 2013, and that the money was being paid by the PA. Norway gives 200 million kroner to Palestine annually, and demanded along with other donor countries that the program be stopped. In 2014, Palestine’s President Mahmoud Abbas gave in to the pressure, and said that the program would be stopped. Now it was the PLO, the Palestine Liberation Organization, that would be paying money to prisoners, with the help of Arab donors. He [Itamar Marcus] heads Palestinian Media Watch, an Israeli organization on the right that monitors Palestinian media. Palestinian Media Watch claims in a report that the PLO is only a cover to appease Norway and other donor countries and that the PA continues to pay money to terrorists in prison."
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PLO Commission of Prisoners in Gaza lists all forms of aid given to prisoners: Salaries to prisoners, salaries to prisoners` families, legal aid, medical, free university studies, etc. 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 20, 2016
Official PA TV program I Call You, a special broadcast for Palestinian Prisoner’s Day, hosting Director of the Gaza office of the PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Bassem Al-Majdalawi, Researcher and expert of prisoners’ affairs Majdi Salem, Head of the prisoners’ committee of the National and Islamic Forces Yasser Muzhir, and the released prisoner Jihad Ghabn.

Director of the Gaza office of the PLO Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Bassem Al-Majdalawi: “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs provides many services that guarantee the prisoners’ families a dignified life in Palestinian society. There are monthly salaries (rawatib ) paid by the Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs to all the Palestinian families with prisoners in the prisons, without differentiating between the Palestinian organizations. The Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs is responsible for paying monthly salaries to all Palestinian and Arab prisoners. Likewise, it conducts legal monitoring for the prisoners serving time in prisons, and in Israeli meetings (i.e., regarding legal matters of the prisoner’s trial)..."

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PMW salary report leads Congressman to condemn PA salary rewards to terrorists 
Source: House Committee on Foreign Affairs' website, Apr. 13, 2016

Congressman Ed Royce: "For some years now you have a system [in the PA] where basically there's been an inducement to pay human assassins to seek out innocent people and kill them, and then a stipend is given for the time that those [Palestinian] individuals serve in custody [in Israeli prisons] for their crime... You were before the committee before [April 2014] and were asked about this and at the time you indicated, 'well that is being,' what were your words at the time, I think, 'phased out' ... There's a stipend upon a stipend if you're an Israeli [Arab] and commit an act against another Israeli. This is a very perverse creation. Unbelievably perverse. And I'd like your response there. And second... Did you know they [the PA] were going to simply transfer this to the PLO? In that sense, they were phasing it off their books, but they weren't phasing it out. They were simply disguising the funding..."
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PLO Commission of Prisoners: 40 Palestinians serving over 20 years in Israeli prisons 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 13, 2016
Headline: “Forty prisoners are serving more than 20 years in the occupation’s prisons”
     “According to a report published by the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs, 40 prisoners are serving more than 20 years in the occupation’s prisons, the veterans among them being Karim Younes and Maher Younes, who have served 34 consecutive years in the occupation’s prisons, and Nael Barghouti who served 35 years and was rearrested after being released in the Shalit [prisoner exchange] deal.”

Karim Younes - an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg in 1980 together with his cousin Maher Younes. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.

Maher Younes - an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing an Israeli soldier in 1980 together with his cousin Karim Younes. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.

Nael and Fakhri Barghouti were part of a Fatah squad who kidnapped and killed an Israeli officer in 1978. They are serving life sentences for this killing.

In October 2011, the Israeli government agreed to release 1,027 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prison in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held hostage by Hamas for more than 5 years.
Over 7,000 Palestinians are in Israeli prisons and detention centers, of which 400 are children, 67 women, etc. 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 12, 2016
Headline: “Announcement of Prisoner’s Day events”
     “In the occupation’s prisons and detention and interrogation centers more than 7,000 Palestinians are rotting away, among them 30 [arrested] before the Oslo [Accords] and who were meant to be released, 400 children, 67 women, 750 administrative detainees, 6 parliament members, and 700 sick prisoners.”
US Congress blocks $159 million in aid to the PA  
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Mar. 20, 2016
Headline: "US Congress blocks $159 million in aid to PA"
"Members of the United States Congress are delaying a payment of $159 million in aid allocated for the Palestinian Authority in effort to pressure the PA to relaunch negotiations with Israel, the PLO ambassador to Washington said Saturday.
Maen Erekat confirmed earlier reports that the US Congress was blocking the payment at the request of House Republican Kay Granger, the Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on State-Foreign Operations, under the pretext that the PA supports 'terrorism.' The Obama administration allocated $440 million in aid to Palestinians for 2015, including $131 million for economic and development projects by USAID and $70 million for PA agencies and security agencies, while $80 million in aid was deducted following Israeli criticism of 'incitement' by the PA last October. Erekat added that some 'pro-Israel' Congress members are continuing to pressure the PA to relaunch diplomatic negotiations with Israel, and prevent Palestinians from joining international organizations and conventions."

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Prisoners in Israeli jails can register for university degrees 
Source: Al-Quds, Mar. 1, 2016
Headline: "[PLO] Commission of Prisoners: University registration for prisoners has begun at the Gilboa prison"
      "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, student prisoners registered at other universities who have completed 30 or more recognized [academic] hours can join the program, and they have priority, regardless of the length of their [prison] sentence, after their [data] has entered a calculation mechanism that takes their situation as prisoners into consideration. The only specializations that can be registered for are social work, the Arab language, Islamic education, and social sciences."
PA: Iranian funds to Martyrs and their families should go through the PA institutions, not on its own 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 27, 2016
Official PA TV News, report on transfer of Iranian funds to Martyrs’ and prisoners’ families through unofficial channels

PA TV newsreader: “In response to what Iranian Parliament Deputy Speaker said about the funds Iran is transferring in illegitimate ways, and Hussein Sheikh Al-Islam’s revelation that Tehran is submitting the funds through its special ways, Presidential Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said that it would have been proper for Iran to officially transfer its funds to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) and prisoners’ institutions, which fulfill their duty to Palestine’s heroes and their families.”
PA presidency objects to Iranian money for prisoners – all prisoners` funds required to go through the PLO 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 27, 2016
Headline: “The presidency: We know nothing about Iranian money that will be paid to prisoners or those whose homes were demolished by the occupation”
     “Presidential Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina stated yesterday [Feb. 27, 2016]: ‘We do not know anything about Iranian money that will be paid to Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli prisons or to those whose homes (i.e., homes of terrorists) were demolished by the occupation forces, and we were not informed about this matter.’
Abu Rudeina continued: ‘The Palestinian presidency objects to any attempt to bypass it in this matter. Likewise, it insists that the PLO is the legal representative and the Palestinian people’s main and sole address, and that the organization did not take long in providing assistance and alleviating our people’s suffering, despite its limited capabilities, and objects to trading in this suffering.”
PA TV describes how 12-year-old girl caught with knife asked for money for canteen at sentencing  
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 25, 2016
Official PA TV program Giants of Endurance on detention of minors

The reporter in the program talks about a 12-year-old girl named Dima Al-Wawi who entered a Jewish settlement with a concealed knife, and was sentenced to 4.5 months in prison. The reporter recounts that during the girl’s trial she was seen making a V gesture for victory with her fingers and telling the judge that she wants 200 shekels to shop in the prison canteen.

Official PA TV reporter: “When the occupation court’s judge sentenced Dima Al-Wawi, 12, to 4.5 months in prison and an 8,000 shekels fine, after she was charged with possessing a knife on the 9th of this month [Feb. 2016], Dima was playing with her hair and arranging it in the courtroom so that she would look prettier… this way [reporter making a V gesture for victory], Dima signaled to her mother in the courtroom. The judge wrote down: ‘She signaled the sign of victory.’ She replied: ‘I want 200 shekels to shop in the [prison] canteen.’”

Note: In addition to monthly salaries, prisoners receive monthly allowances from the Palestinian Authority to purchase goods in the prison canteen.

Dima Al-Wawi – 12-year-old female Palestinian terrorist who tried to stab an Israeli security guard on Feb. 9, 2016, at the entrance to Karmei Tzur near Hebron. Al-Wawi pleaded guilty to attempted manslaughter and was sentenced to 4.5 months in prison. However, she was released six weeks early on April 24, 2016, due to her young age. After her release, Al-Wawi said she had hoped to murder the security guard, and be shot and die as a Martyr (
Shahid).
Sec-Gen of organization for Martyrs’ families: PA pays money to terrorists’ families to support them, not to motivate terror, and will not stop the payments 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 23, 2016
     Headline: “The National Gathering of Palestine Families condemned the statements of an Israeli minister”
“The National Gathering of Palestine Families (i.e., literally The National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine) condemned the statements of Israeli Minister of Education Naftali Bennett regarding Martyrs, according to which ‘Their families do not prevent them from carrying out operations (i.e., terror attacks) in order to obtain monthly salaries.'...
[Secretary-General of the organization, Muhammad] Sbeihat, emphasized that all the money in the world cannot compensate the mother of a Martyr, not even for one drop of blood that bled out of her son’s body, as our people values the human being, and loves life more than all peoples of the world. However, the Israeli occupation is what pushes our children to confront its military apparatus with bare chests, and what actually happens is that the occupation soldiers, under clear orders from their leadership, are killing our sons without [even] a minimal excuse. He added that what the PA is doing is an attempt to provide a dignified life to the miserable families of Martyrs, and it is a national duty to these families. Likewise, he emphasized that [Israeli Minister of Education Naftali] Bennett’s statements will not prevent the [PA] government from continuing to pay monthly allowances to these strong fighting families.”

Note: During a cabinet meeting on Feb. 21, 2016, Israeli Minster of Education Naftali Bennett’s said that Palestinians do not prevent their children from carrying out stabbing attacks because the families know that they will receive a grant and a monthly allowance from the PA.
Ex-prisoner demands higher rank and salary from Abbas 
Source: Al-Quds, Feb. 22, 2016
     Headline: “Palestinian fighter entreats the president [Abbas] to give him his due”
“Citizen Jamal Al-Huzaibi, a past prisoner sentenced to life, expelled, and suffering from limited mobility and speech problems since 1983, entreated President Mahmoud Abbas to implement his decision to give him the rank of brigadier general, his due according to Palestinian law. It should be noted that Al-Huzaibi was arrested in 1983 after carrying out a military operation (i.e., terror attack) which led to the death of an Israeli settler, and Al-Huzaibi was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Click "full article" for a fuller excerpt and background on the terrorist
Abbas meets with families of terrorists, ‎promises to compensate those whose ‎homes were destroyed by Israel 
Source: Al-Araby Al-Jadeed (UK Arab news website), Feb. 4, 2016
Headline: "Abbas promises to ‎compensate the families of the ‎Jerusalem Martyrs for their homes"‎
     Sources in the Jerusalem Martyrs' ‎‎(Shahids') families and in the National ‎Campaign to Return the Bodies of the ‎Martyrs (Shahids) confirmed that ‎President Mahmoud Abbas promised to ‎compensate the Jerusalem Martyrs' ‎families for their homes, which the ‎occupation forces demolished or ‎damaged. The sources confirmed that ‎President Mahmoud Abbas ordered his ‎assistants to begin the procedures to ‎compensate the Martyrs' families for ‎seven homes. Two of them were ‎demolished after the outbreak of the ‎popular ‘Rage [of Jerusalem] Uprising’: ‎The home of Martyr Baha Alyan, and the ‎home of Martyr Alaa Abu Jamal, into ‎which they poured cement, while five of ‎the homes that were demolished ‎belonged to Martyrs and people who ‎carried out operations (i.e., terror attacks) ‎before the October 2015 uprising.‎
President Mahmoud Abbas met ‎yesterday [Feb. 3, 2016] with a few family ‎members of Jerusalem Martyrs, among ‎them the fathers of Martyrs Baha Alyan, ‎Ahmad Abu Sha'aban, and Alaa Abu ‎Jamal, the father and cousin of Martyr ‎Hassan Manasrah, and [the fathers of ‎the Martyrs] Thaer Abu Ghazaleh, ‎Muhammad Abu Nimr, and Mutaz ‎Awisat…‎
Advisor to the president [Mahmoud ‎Abbas] on Jerusalem matters Ahmed Al-‎Ruweidi stated to Al-Arabi Al-Jadid: ‎‎'President Mahmoud Abbas shows great ‎interest in the matter of the Jerusalem ‎Martyrs' bodies, which the occupation ‎state is holding on to. He has already ‎raised the matter more than once in ‎international forums."‎

Click "full article" to view descriptions of the terrorists whose families Abbas chose to meet with.
Op-ed in PA daily responds to Israeli criticism of international aid for terrorists: The world owes the Palestinians money for enabling Israel’s establishment, majority of aid money goes to PA salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 3, 2016
Headline: “Hotovely and the baseless questions”
Op-ed by Omar Hilmi Al-Ghoul, columnist for official PA daily
      “Israeli Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Tzipi Hotovely published an article last week in the American Wall Street Journal, titled ‘Where Does All That Aid for Palestinians Go.’ [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu’s deputy wondered where the aid funds have gone that have been given to the Palestinians over the past 22 years, and which have amounted to 21 billion US dollars in the form of development aid from 1993 to 2013, according to the World Bank... Hotovely’s article misleads world public opinion, turns the facts upside down, incites, and blackens the image of the Palestinian leadership and Palestinian fighters... If we consider each point [of the article] that appears in the American magazine separately, we will notice the following things: First, the Israeli extremist [Hotovely] ignores or pretends not to know that the funds of the donor countries are the minimum that the international community owes the Palestinians, and Europe in particular, which contributed to the establishment of the State of Israel on the ruins of the Nakba (i.e., 'the catastrophe,' Palestinian term for the establishment of the State of Israel) of the Palestinian people in 1948. Secondly, she ignored the fact that the majority of the total funds received by the PA over 20 years were used for salaries of the PA’s civil and military employees.”
Official PA daily calls 166 terrorists killed during Palestinian terror wave between October 2015 – January 2016 “martyrs” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 1, 2016
“The [Abdallah Al-Hourani Center for Research and Documentation of the PLO] report clarified that 22 Martyrs (Shahids) died during this month [January 2016]…
And so, the number of Martyrs since the outbreak of the popular uprising (‎‎Palestinian euphemism for several months of Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis 2015 - 2016 -Ed.) at the beginning of last October [2015] has risen to 166.”

Palestinian terror wave (2015-2016) – Palestinian violence and terror attacks against Israelis, ‎including stabbings, shootings, throwing Molotov cocktails, and car rammings. It started in September 2015 and as of July 12, 2016, Palestinian terrorists murdered 40 people (36 Israelis, 1 Palestinian, 2 Americans, and 1 foreign worker from Eritrea) and injured over 500.
38 Palestinian prisoners have served more than 20 years in prison; 504 are serving life sentences 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 21, 2016
Headline: “38 prisoners served more than 20 years in the occupation’s prisons”
     “The [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs stated yesterday [Jan. 21, 2016] in a report that the number of prisoners who have served more than 20 years in the occupation’s prisons has risen to 38 prisoners, most of them sentenced to life, and 14 of them from among residents of the territories occupied in 1948 (i.e., Israel). The commission noted that the veteran prisoners are Karim Younes, arrested on Jan. 6, 1983, and Maher Younes, arrested on Jan. 18, 1983. The commission said that the number of prisoners sentenced to life sentences has risen to 504 prisoners.”

Karim Younes - an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg in 1980 together with his cousin Maher Younes. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.

Maher Younes - an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing an Israeli soldier in 1980 together with his cousin Karim Younes. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.
PLO organization approves list of “Martyrs,” pays allowances to families of terrorists 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 13, 2016
Headline: "The National Association of the Martyrs' Families of Palestine: The number of Martyrs of the uprising is 153"

"The National Association of the Martyrs' Families of Palestine) announced yesterday that as of the day before [Jan. 11, 2016] the number of Martyrs of the popular uprising is 153 male and female Martyrs. Secretary-General of the association Muhammad Sbeihat said that… the body that approves Martyrs is the institution that takes care of the families of Martyrs and wounded, and it is an official body under the PLO, and not the [PA] Ministry of Health, which carries out its professional task according to the PA's laws and regulations... Secretary-General of the association Sbeihat clarified that the institution to take care of the families of Martyrs and injured approves all the Martyrs of the Palestinian cause, whether they are from within the homeland or from the Diaspora, without any reference to their belonging or political leanings, and gives them monthly allowances. He emphasized that this also includes families of the Martyrs in Jerusalem and the interior (i.e., Israel) who even receive a special supplement of 300 shekels, due to the difference in the cost of living."

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PA Ministry of Health calls 89 terrorists killed during beginning of Palestinian terror wave “martyrs” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 18, 2015
“According to the [PA] Ministry of Health, with [Muhammad] Saleh’s death as a Martyr (Shahid), the number of Martyrs rises to 89 since the beginning of last October [2015] up until the 17th of this month [Nov. 17, 2015].”

Muhammad Saleh – a 24-year-old Palestinian terrorist who opened fire on Israeli soldiers from close range on Nov. 17, 2015 near the town of Turmus Ayya northeast of Ramallah. Saleh missed the soldiers, who returned fire and shot and killed him. Two accomplices who drove with Saleh to the site of the attack were arrested.
PLO director of Prisoners’ Affairs urges PA to pay grants to released prisoners and announces that Abbas issued order to pay them 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 17, 2015
Headline: "Karake demands that the government pay the accumulated release grants to released prisoners"
      "Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake reiterated his demand that the government and treasury pay the release grants of thousands of released prisoners, who have been released in recent years, and were not paid these grants as determined by law… He said that it is important that every prisoner who is released receive aid, however minimal, in order to begin his life after his stay in prison, and because it is the law. However, unfortunately, these grants have accumulated over the years, and reached more than 6 million dollars, which has created a serious crisis and raised doubts among the released [prisoners]. Likewise, Karake said that President Mahmoud Abbas issued orders to pay these grants and set a timetable for them, according to financial abilities, because every prisoner needs money after being released. Karake noted that many of the released served more than 10 years, some of them need treatment, and others wish to marry, and they urgently need the grants. Karake clarified that among the released there is an atmosphere of bitterness and stress, and that the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs has turned to all relevant bodies in order to speed up their payment, but has received no response."
Abbas partially funds housing project in ‎Bethlehem district for terrorists serving ‎life sentences in Israel 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 17, 2015
Headline: “Hamdallah lays the corner ‎stone for the ‘Hope Neighborhood’ ‎building project meant for prisoners ‎serving life sentences, and announces ‎that the government will provide $200,000 ‎for the project”‎
     ‎“[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah laid ‎the cornerstone for the ‘Hope ‎Neighborhood’ housing project in the ‎village of Al-Ubeidiya in the Bethlehem ‎district, which is meant for prisoners ‎serving life sentences [in Israel] and ‎which will serve about 120 life prisoners ‎in Bethlehem and the Hebron district. He ‎announced government aid of $200,000 ‎for the housing project…‎ Hamdallah said to those present… ‘I am ‎very proud to be here today among the ‎families of our brave prisoners, freedom ‎prisoners, in order to lay the cornerstone ‎of the ‘Hope Neighborhood’ housing ‎project, which is meant for life prisoners ‎and it is the first national project of its type ‎in the homeland.’‎ [...] ‎Hamdallah clarified: ‘This building project ‎is based on an exceptional national idea, ‎and a strong message – we will not give ‎up on the prisoners’ release, and we will ‎protect them until they again embrace ‎freedom. The Amman charity organization ‎and the Committee for Life Prisoners’ ‎Families in Bethlehem are carrying out ‎‎[the project], with a $150,000 grant from ‎the Arab League. The remaining cost of ‎the land was covered by President ‎Mahmoud Abbas, who also decided to ‎completely exempt the project from ‎licenses.”‎

Israel gives life sentences to terrorists who have committed murder
PA government “won’t hesitate” to give funds to the PLO’s Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 16, 2015
     "The government emphasized that it takes care to ensure a dignified life for the released prisoners. It emphasized that the Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs is subordinate to the PLO, and that the government will not hesitate to offer the necessary assistance to the national Palestinian fund (i.e., the fund financing the PLO) in order to implement the legislation regarding prisoners. It called on the UN to ensure the protection of the prisoners, and to obligate Israel to recognize them as prisoners of state, especially in the wake of the State of Palestine having joined international treaties and agreements.”

On Dec. 31, 2014, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas signed onto 18 international treaties, including the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, with the stated goal of prosecuting Israel in international forums. Abbas stated that the move was motivated by the desire "to complain about the harm caused to us and to our land.”
6,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails  
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 7, 2015
Headline: “An American university delegation was updated regarding the issue of prisoners in the occupation’s (i.e., Israel) jails”
     “Media Consultant to the Director of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Hassan Abd Rabbo updated a delegation of students from three American universities on recent developments regarding the issue of the prisoners yesterday [Sept. 6, 2015]…
Abd Rabbo clarified to the delegation…that 850,000 Palestinians have experienced detention, and around 6,000 of our people are currently sitting in the occupation’s (i.e., Israel) prisons.
Of them, there are 200 children minors, 27 female prisoners, five members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, hundreds of sick prisoners who do not receive any sort of treatment other than pain relievers, 500 prisoners who were given life sentences, and 30 prisoners from before the Oslo Accords.”
PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs: 6,000 Palestinian prisoners are in Israeli prisons, 1,000 prisoners have served over 15 years 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 27, 2015
Headline: “1,000 Palestinian prisoners have served 15 or more years in [Israeli] prisons”
      “Head of [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake stated that there are 1,000 Palestinian prisoners who have served over 15 years in the occupation’s prisons, among them 30 prisoners who have served more than 20 years. The most veteran prisoners are Karim Younes and Maher Younes, and the female prisoner Lina Al-Jarbouni, and the total number of prisoners is 6,000. Karake emphasized in a statement yesterday [Aug. 26, 2015] that any return to negotiations or political arrangements must be dependent on the release of thousands of prisoners from the prisons, especially those who have served over 15 years in prison, and the Palestinian leaders, headed by [PA Parliament Member] Marwan Barghouti, [former head of PFLP] Ahmad Sa’adat, [senior PA official Fuad] Al-Shubaki, in addition to the sick [prisoners] who are in very serious condition. He said that President Mahmoud Abbas stopped the negotiation process because of Israel’s non-commitment to the release of the prisoners, and because the Palestinian position is based on the release of thousands of prisoners, and not just the fourth stage. (See below.) This is especially so in light of previous commitments regarding this matter which were not carried out by the Netanyahu government. Karake called on the US not to release Israeli spy [Jonathan] Pollard, unless [Israel] releases thousands of Palestinian prisoners, if it [the US] wants to be an unchallenged and impartial factor in any future political arrangement regarding the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.”

Click "full article" for more information about the terrorists mentioned in the article
PA has paid almost 25 billion shekels to Gaza civil servants for not working, due to PA-Hamas feud 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Aug. 20, 2015
Headline: “Abu Shahla talks about the financial crisis, early retirement, and Gaza employees”
"Interview with Minister of Labor [in the national consensus government] Ma'moun Abu Shahla who spoke to Ma’an about the government’s financial crisis:
[Q:] 'Is there discrimination in this matter between Gaza and the West Bank?'
[Abu Shahla:] 'We clearly state that there are civil servants receiving a salary and not working in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip, and more in the West Bank. Whoever was prevented from working in Gaza, there is no decision about this, and this person is outside the framework of the settlement. This person who stopped working due to a political decision, nobody imposes the burden or the responsibility on him. A hundred months have passed, and the government has paid them about 25 billion shekels, (i.e., 6.5 billion dollars) and did not keep back one cent, and this is a national matter that cannot be touched. Therefore we state that there is no decision to obligate anyone to take early retirement, and if there is a decision, it will only be by choice. As for what has been said in the media, there is no basis…'"

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PA TV guest indirectly acknowledges PMW impact: Israel “incite[s] the international community… against the prisoners” 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 27, 2015
Official PA TV News report on a statement by Chairman of the Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares who criticized the ”incitement” of the Israeli Ma’ariv newspaper against the prisoner program “Giants of Endurance,” which is broadcast on official PA TV, hosted Director of the Hurriyat (“Freedom”) Center Hilmi Al-Araj.
Director of the Hurriyat (“Freedom”) Center Hilmi Al-Araj: “In fact, this isn’t the first attack of the occupation authorities, on all levels, against the prisoners, the Palestinian media, and the Palestinian national television, in an attempt to intimidate this voice and the prisoners and their families. They incite the international community, the European Union, and the American government against the prisoners. At the moment, they’re fighting the prisoners, their families, and the national television, which due to its patriotic policies – and this is its natural right – had its broadcasts banned in the prisons. Therefore I state clearly: The Palestinian people and its leaders will ignore all these threats and this blatant attack, because these are our prisoners, our heroes, and it is our duty to honor them, to appreciate them, to uplift them, and to be in their homes. This is justice and support for the prisoners, and therefore these attempts will not stop us from fulfilling this task: support of the cause of the prisoners until their liberation.”
Karake: Prisoners and released prisoners should be given priority in available PA government positions 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 22, 2015
Headline: “Karake calls for governmental and civil institutions to absorb the released prisoners as workers”
     “Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake called for the government and civil institutions to give priority to prisoners and released prisoners in available positions, in order to allow them to integrate into society and overcome the difficulties of life after release. Karake referred to the government decision and the President Mahmoud Abbas’ orders to give released [prisoners] priority in public positions. This is part of the preparation for their struggle and their victims, and an attempt to overcome the high level of unemployment in their ranks.”
Prisoners’ Affairs official calls for prisoners released in 1985 exchange deal to get higher salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 21, 2015
Headline: “Farwaneh calls for justice for those released in the [prisoner] exchange deal of 1985”
     “The Investigator of Prisoners’ Affairs [and Head of the Statistics Department of the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs] Abd Al-Nasser Farwaneh called for PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, PA Minister of Finance Dr. Shukri Bishara, Director of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake, all national factions, and the Islamists to do justice for those freed in the [prisoner] exchange deal of 1985. This should be done in a way that will guarantee them and their families an appropriate level of dignified living, equal to those of their peers who were released on later occasions, and especially those released in the Shalit deal.
Farwaneh clarified that everyone released in the framework of the [prisoner] exchange deal in 1985, and who had served many years of their lives in the occupation’s prisons, more than ten years, had not received the financial grant that those recently released received, known as the ’Dignified Life Grant.’ Likewise, some of them are receiving a very limited salary in the framework of the pension system (insurance and pensions) [parentheses in source], and others among them are not serving as workers in the public sphere, but rather receive limited salaries from the Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, only $600 to $750. However, these salaries do not provide them and their families with the minimal basic necessities of life as appropriate to their suffering and sacrifice, and other peers are receiving twice as much and even more, and the continuation of this situation will impact negatively on them and their families."
Abbas supervising PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, allegedly no longer under PA control  
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, May 9, 2015
PA TV News reader: “His Excellency President Mahmoud Abbas authorized the work regulations of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs, which was phrased before it changed from a government ministry to a commission belonging to the PLO.”

Click to view PMW's special report: Is the PA lying to Western donors?
Prisoners’ Affairs commission releases statistics about Palestinian prisoners in Israel 
Source: Wattan TV (Palestinian private channel), Apr. 15, 2015
Headline: “The Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs calls to persecute Israel for the crimes and violations it carried out against prisoners”

“As -
Palestinian Prisoners’ Day draws nearer (April 17), the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs published a report regarding the situation and conditions of the Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli occupation’s prisons.

The report states:

The prisoners in numbers
- 6,500 prisoners
- 478 prisoners sentenced to one or more life sentences
- 21 female prisoners, including two minors
- 205 children under the age of 18
- 480 prisoners under administrative detention
- 13 members of parliament, in addition to two former ministers
- 1,500 prisoners suffering various illnesses, among them about 80 in extremely poor physical condition
- 30 prisoners who have been imprisoned since before the Oslo [Accords], more than 20 years ago
- In the case of 16 veteran prisoners, more than a quarter of a century has passed since they were arrested, among them the prisoners Karim and Maher Younes, who were arrested 33 years ago.

Note: Karim and Maher Younes: Israeli Arabs (cousins) serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg in 1980. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced their sentences in 2012.
EU and Netherlands donate 31.6 million Euros for PA salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 3, 2015
Headline: “The European Union and the Netherlands donated 31.6 million euros to the PA’s salaries to its civil servants”
     “The European Union announced its contribution of 30.9 million euros yesterday [April 2, 2015] , to the payment of part of the salaries and pensions of around 68,000 civil servants and pensioners in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.”
From WAFA, official PA news agency
Prisoners’ Affairs director announces upcoming payment of salaries to prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 3, 2015
Headline: “Salaries to prisoners on Sunday”
     “Prisoners’ Affairs Commission director [and PA Parliament Member] Issa Karake said that the prisoners’ salaries would be paid this coming Sunday [April 5, 2015].”
From WAFA, official PA news agency
PA Ministry of Finance: Budget cuts will not affect salaries for families of Martyrs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 8, 2015
Headline: “The Ministry of Finance will not apply the temporary [budget] cut to the salaries (ratib) of the families of the Martyrs and the wounded”
     “The National Union of the Families of the Martyrs (Shahids) of Palestine announced that [PA] Finance Minister Shukri Bishara had agreed to pay the families of the Martyrs and wounded their monthly allowances (mukhassas) in full, rather than the 60% of the allowance as [is done with] government employees.”

Note: The temporary cut follows Israel’s withholding of taxes from the PA.
Palestinian prisoners in Israel may do PA matriculation exams 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 6, 2015
Headline: “Karake: The prisoners’ matriculation exams will take place on July 15”
     “Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Director [and PA Parliament Member] Issa Karake said that the matriculation exams of the prisoners in the prisons where the rules of acceptance apply will begin on July 15, 2015 and continue until July 30, 2015, according to an agreement between the Commission [of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs] and the [PA] Ministry of Higher Education. In a statement made yesterday [March 5, 2015], Karake thanked [PA] Minister of Education and Higher Education Dr. Khawla Shakhshir and the staff of the Ministry of Education for their cooperation, their interest in the prisoners’ [issue] and for making it possible for them to take the exams for the second consecutive year. [Karake added that] this constitutes an important step, a great achievement and a challenge to the prison authorities, who had stopped [offering] matriculation exams and university studies in 2009.”
Karake proves that PA still responsible for terrorists' salaries 
Source: , Mar. 6, 2015
 A statement from Issa Karake, the former PA Minister of Prisoners who became the Director of the PLO Commission on Prisoners, provides further evidence that the creation of the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs was a superficial change in name only that did not reflect any true change in its sources of funding. According to Karake’s statement, the employees of the PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs are also paid their salaries directly from the PA government: 
    “[PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Director Issa Karake called on the [PA] government to pay the salaries of the Commission’s employees - in Gaza. Karake directed his appeal to [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, stressing that the Commission’s employees in Gaza had not been paid their salaries this month. The government announced last Wednesday that it would pay [each employee] at least 2,000 shekels from the employees’ salaries, because of the continued freezing of [PA] tax money for the third consecutive month by the occupation government.” 
PA reduces salaries to prisoners to 60%  
Source: Wattan News Agency, Mar. 5, 2015
     “Coordinator of the Committee for Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs Husni Zalum said that the salaries of the prisoners and released prisoners in the occupation prisons will be paid through the banks at noon today. Zalum told the Wattan News Agency that they had been notified by the [PA] Ministry of Finance about this, and that it would be made the same way as last month: A full salary will be paid to those entitled to less than 2,000 shekels per month, while 60% of the basic salary will be paid to those receiving a salary above 2,000 shekels.”
6,500 Palestinian prisoners imprisoned in Israel 
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Mar. 4, 2015
Headline: “Commission of Prisoners’ [Affairs]: 6,500 prisoners in over 22 prisons and detention centers”

“A report that was published by the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners’ Affairs today, Wednesday [March 4, 2015], notes that around 6,500 Palestinian prisoners are sitting in over 22 prisons and detention centers in severe and troubling conditions. According to the report, among the prisoners there are 20 female prisoners and 230 children.”
6,200 Palestinian prisoners imprisoned in Israel 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 2, 2015
Headline: “The Prisoners’ Club published a documentation report regarding the prominent incidents of the month of February in the occupation’s prisons”

“The [PA-funded Prisoners’] Club clarified that 6,200 prisoners are sitting in the occupation’s prisons, including 21 female prisoners and 213 prisoner minors, including three female youths.”
PLO Commission of Prisoners gives each prisoner 400 NIS as canteen money 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 11, 2015
Headline: “Transfer of canteen money to the prisoners in the occupation prisons”
     “The Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs emphasized yesterday [Jan. 10, 2015] that the canteen money had been transferred and delivered to the prisoners in the occupation prisons, after all efforts had been concentrated to end their suffering. The funds constitute their primary life line, which allows them to purchase food products and other needs. The Commission [of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs] said it had confirmed that these funds had reached all the prisoners in the prisons, and that the occupation was the reason for the delay that had occurred after it confiscated the funds of the Palestinian state because of personal political agendas.
The Commission clarified that 3 million shekels had been transferred to the prisoners, and that each prisoner had received 400 shekels. The Commission also clarified that it would always act in coordination with all the institutions involved to alleviate the suffering of these heroes who are standing firm, and that they would never be left to face this occupation and its vindictive policy alone.”
PA approves amendment that guarantees positions for released prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 28, 2015
Headline: “Government intends to reshape financial ties with Israel – regulation to guarantee positions to prisoners approved”
     “The government decided to approve the amendment to Regulation 15 for 2013, which guarantees positions to released prisoners, in accordance with its previous decision to approve the suggestions of the technical committee responsible for reviewing the legislation regarding prisoners.”
PA daily: PA Ministry of Finance negotiates conditions under which salaries are paid to prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 27, 2015
 An article in the official PA daily explained that it is the PA government and the PA Ministry of Finance and not the PLO that negotiates conditions under which salaries are paid to prisoners, again showing the PA is directly responsible for the salaries:
    “[The Released Prisoners’] Committee spokesman Omar Afaneh told Al-Hayat Al-Jadida that the Committee had come to an agreement with representatives of the [PA] government… according to which salaries would continue to be paid according to the legal criteria that was previously agreed upon, without any changes or additions to the previous agreement... Afaneh noted that the dispute centered on the conditions the [PA] Ministry of Finance recently set [for payments to released prisoners]…”

Click "full article" for a longer excerpt from the article
47% of Ministry of Finance's budget in Gaza goes to civil servants, prisoners and families 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 6, 2015
     “The [PA] Ministry of Finance published a statement of clarification to the press yesterday evening, in which it responded to the declarations attributed to Hamas Deputy Political Bureau Chief Ismail Haniyeh. The statement reads as follows:
‘On the issue of the declarations made by Hamas Deputy Political Bureau Chief Ismail Haniyeh… who said that ‘There is no truth to the claim that what they [the PA] spend on Gaza is 55% of the PA budget,’ we in the Ministry of Finance believe that it is necessary to clarify that in practice, we transfer no less than 47% of our budget for the benefit of our brothers in the southern districts (i.e., the Gaza Strip). These expenses include the salaries of over 63,000 civilian and military employees, as well as the salaries of the prisoners, the released [prisoners] and the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded.’”
Commission of Prisoners’ and Released Prisoners’ Affairs: 6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 30, 2014
     “According to the official Palestinian statistics of the Commission of Prisoners’ and Released Prisoners' Affairs, approximately 35% of the prisoners are married. The Al-Damir organization for prisoners’ rights noted that there are 6,500 Palestinian prisoners, serving various sentences in the occupation prisons. They include 478 prisoners sentenced for life, 463 prisoners sentenced to over 20 years in prison, 15 prisoners who have served over 25 years, 30 who have served over 20 years, and 30 who were arrested before the Oslo Accords.”
6,500 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons (as of December 2014) 
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Dec. 24, 2014
     “Abd Al-Nasser Farwaneh, Head of the Statistics Department of the Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs … said that since last June 12 [2013], over 4,000 arrests were recorded, bringing the current number of prisoners and detainees to approximately 6,500… He noted that 478 prisoners were serving one or multiple life sentences…”
The PA stopped paying fines imposed by Israel on Palestinian prisoners 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 16, 2014
Official PA TV News:
Newsreader: “Prisoners’ Affairs Commission director [and PA Parliament member] Issa Karake announced that the [PA] government has stopped paying the fines continually imposed on the prisoners by the occupation courts. Karake clarified that the occupation courts demand high sums from the prisoners, and that 95% of the sentences are accompanied by fines, some of which are exceedingly high, and which are never repaid (i.e., as opposed to bail).”
Arafat initiated the PA practice of paying salaries to imprisoned Palestinian terrorists 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Nov. 10, 2014
Official PA TV News report on the weekly demonstration near the central headquarters of the Red Crescent in Gaza, at which families of the prisoners honored Yasser Arafat on the anniversary of his death. 

Muwaffaq Hamid of the Commission of Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Affairs: “These prisoners’ families are marking this anniversary [of Yasser Arafat’s death]. Each year, the prisoners’ families return and hold a ceremony marking the anniversary of the Martyrdom-death of the symbol and commander Yasser Arafat, out of loyalty to the prisoners and their families. For deceased Chairman Yasser Arafat, may he rest in peace, the man who founded the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs and initiated the [paying of] military salaries to every prisoner in the Israeli prisons, which suffices for the families of these prisoners to live in dignity.”
PA Ministry of Finance works to ease paperwork for prisoners released before 1995 to receive salaries and benefits 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 19, 2014
Headline: "Karake: The problem of obtaining indictments of veteran released [prisoners] has been solved"
     "Director of the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake said that the problem of obtaining indictments of prisoners released before 1995, needed to complete their files and for the payment of their salaries and benefits, will soon be resolved together with the [PA] Ministry of Finance. He added: 'The Ministry of Finance understood and is cooperating. The easements [that will be determined] according to objective criteria will be published before the end of this month [October 2014]. Our mission is to ease the process and not to complicate it.' Prisoners released 30 or 40 years ago run into difficulties in obtaining their indictments and verdicts, because of all the time that has passed and the non-existence of these documents in the Israeli courts' archives. This leads them to appoint a lawyer and pay exorbitant legal fees in order to obtain them.
Karake said: 'The lawyers take advantage of the fact that the released [prisoners] need these documents, request exorbitant amounts from them, and play with them. It is disgraceful to trade in the needs of released [prisoners].'
He continued: 'Many complaints have reached us recently regarding the fact that Palestinian lawyers, some of them with Israeli identity cards (i.e., Israeli Arabs), have requested and collected fees of between 3,000 and 7,000 Israeli shekels for each prisoner, without obtaining the necessary indictments and verdicts."
PMW documentation puts international pressure on the PA over the salaries paid to prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 9, 2014
Headline: “Karake: We are facing an Israeli-American war against the prisoners”
     “Prisoners’ and Released Prisoners’ Affairs Commission Director Issa Karake said: ‘For the past five years, we have been facing war and pressure from Israel, the US and several European countries on [the issue of] the prisoners’ legal, political and social rights.’ (PMW note: PMW exposed and documented the PA’s policy of rewarding terrorists with high salaries and brought it to the attention of the US and Europe.)
He added that Israel wants us to renounce the prisoners and their families, under the slogan of ‘terrorism,’ (i.e., the prisoners are in jail for terror-related crimes) and to fall in line with aggressive racist concepts vis a vis the detainees in the occupation prisons.
In addition, he noted that Israel has been carrying out a policy of draining the prisoners of their national essence and fighting [spirit], in order to transform them into creatures without purpose or values, through diplomatic, political and economic pressure, and by means of arbitrary laws and procedures it implements against the prisoners…
He added: ‘Our prisoners are freedom fighters, prisoners of war and the vanguard of national liberation. We cannot abandon them or renounce them. To the contrary, we will act on all levels to assist them and free them, and the prisoners’ issue will remain the foundation stone of any just agreement in the region.”
PA daily: PA pays salaries to prisoners, released prisoners, prisoners’ families, and families of martyrs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 8, 2014
     “The number [of public employees] currently registered in the General Workers’ Office comes to approximately 175,000. Yet the total number of recipients of government salaries exceeds 200,000 – if one includes the families of the Martyrs (Shahids) and wounded, as well as the prisoners’ and released [prisoners’] pensions – it constitutes approximately 65% of the Palestinian government’s monthly expenditure.
The tax money [the PA] gets back from Israel, which represents two thirds of the Palestinian monthly income and is estimated at approximately 130 million dollars, constitutes the basis for the government’s ability to continue paying the salaries… The monthly figures published by the unity government Finance Ministry have shown that the rate of increase of the salaries of public employees accounted for approximately 48% of the government’s total expenditure in the past months. Government expenditure on salaries alone during the first seven months of this year [2014] amounted to 1.2 billion dollars out of 2.5 billion. The government’s forecast indicated that the cost of salaries for the present fiscal year will reach approximately 2.7 billion dollars – that is, 47% of the total budget, which is estimated at 4.21 billion dollars.”
Prisoners’ Commission releases details of salaries for single and married prisoners who served over 10 years 
Source: Facebook page of the Commission for Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Affairs in the Gaza Strip, Sept. 19, 2014
     “In order to clarify the changes [made] to the salaries of the released prisoners included in the ‘regular salary system’ who have served ten years or more [in prison], we [hereby] inform you that the salaries in this category were calculated as follows:
Single men: basic [salary] of 1,500 shekels + 900 shekels
Married men: basic [salary] of 2,000 shekels + 900 shekels
This is a temporary system, [in effect] until the law is passed that will amend their situation and assign them fixed payments according to the salary chart clarified in the amended Prisoners’ and Released Prisoners Law.”
Canteen allowances for prisoners amount to ‎‎3 million shekels per month‎ 
Source: WAFA news agency, Sept. 9, 2014
     ‎“The [PA] Finance Ministry and the [PLO] Commission of Prisoners’ and Released ‎Prisoners’ Affairs emphasized that the ‎prisoners’ canteen allowances for the ‎month of August [2014] have been ‎transferred to the banks in keeping with ‎the usual procedure. ‎The Finance Ministry and the Prisoners’ ‎Commission emphasized in a joint press ‎release today, Tuesday [Sept. 9, 2014], ‎that they are working, in consultation with ‎the prisoners and all relevant factors, to ‎fix the canteen [allowance] payment ‎system...‎ In addition, they emphasized that the ‎government will not avoid the payments ‎related to prisoners in prison, [including] ‎canteen [allowances], despite the state’s ‎severe financial crisis.‎
The announcement read [as follows]: ‎‎‘The understandings [we] have had with ‎the Israel Prison Service and the Israeli ‎DDS company, and which are applicable ‎today, stipulate that there must be ‎equality between the regular criminal ‎prisoners and the fighter security ‎prisoners. In addition, it should be noted ‎that these understandings, which drain ‎the treasury, have unfair repercussions, ‎as they exclude the prisoners from ‎Jerusalem and the prisoners of 1948 (i.e., ‎because they are Israeli Arabs and not ‎considered citizens of the PA).’ ‎[The announcement] added: ‘The sum ‎total of the canteen [allowances], which ‎is close to 3 million shekels a month, ‎includes 800,000 shekels a month for ‎criminal prisoners, meaning 9 million ‎shekels a year. The sum total over the ‎past 10 years reached approximately 90 ‎million shekels.’”‎
Director of Prisoners’ Affairs acknowledges error in payment of salaries for released prisoners and announces retroactive payment 
Source: Facebook page of the Commission for Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Affairs in the Gaza Strip, Sept. 7, 2014
     “Bassem Al-Majdalawi, Director of Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Affairs, announced that the deductions from the salaries of the prisoners released in the Shalit deal were retroactive income tax deductions [made] before the transfer of their salaries to the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, where their salaries would be systematized next month [October 2014].
In addition, Al-Majdalawi explained that several of these prisoners released in the Shalit deal had not received their salaries this month because of a technical error at the Finance Ministry, and that their salaries had been stopped because the Ministry had demanded they provide it with a legal commitment. This demand, however, was made exclusively of those [prisoners] receiving regular unemployment [benefits], not those [released in] the Shalit deal, [whose salaries] had been transferred to the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs.
Al-Majdalani reassured the released prisoners, telling them that the Finance Ministry had understood the error after [receiving] a letter from Minister [of Prisoners’ Affairs] Issa Karake, and that the Finance Ministry would pay their salaries retroactively at the beginning of next month.”

Note: Shalit deal – In October 2011, the Israeli government agreed to release 1,027 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prison in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held hostage by Hamas for more than 5 years. Dozens of the terrorists released in that deal were rearrested in June 2014, following the abduction of Israeli teens Eyal Yifrach, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Frenkel, 16.
Karake appointed head of Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, a PLO body, in attempt to shield PA from donor pressure on prisoner issue 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 3, 2014
     "Following the publication of the presidential decree transforming the [PA] Ministry of Prisoners' [Affairs] into a commission, an official ceremony was held yesterday [Sept. 2, 2014] to transfer [the ministry portfolio] from former Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Shawqi Issa to the [new] head of the Commission [of Prisoners' Affairs], Minister Issa Karake, who was appointed by the President [Mahmoud Abbas]. [Former Minister Shawqi] Issa emphasized the need for extensive cooperation under all circumstances and [at all] times, because the prisoners' issue is on the leadership's agenda. He also emphasized that all efforts must be concentrated in this direction.
The head of the commission, Issa Karake, thanked Minister Issa for the efforts he has invested and continues to invest, and expressed his hope that things would progress smoothly, given that the commission must become established and organized - [a process] which will take some time."
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Note: In an interview on Ajyal radio (independent Palestinian radio station), Karake confirmed that the PA Ministry of Prisoners Affairs was transformed into the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO, in an attempt to deflect international pressure on the PA on the issue of Palestinian terrorist prisoners who receive PA salaries. To view the interview, click here.
Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs now part of PLO, in ploy to shield PA from donor pressure about prisoners' salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 3, 2014
     "In its meeting yesterday [Sept. 2, 2014], the [PA] government appointed former [PA] Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake head of the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, and revoked Minister Shawqi Issa's appointment to this position... (When the Fatah-Hamas unity government was formed in June 2014, Shawqi Issa became Minister of Prisoners' Affairs instead of Issa Karake -Ed.)
[Subheadline] Karake Appointed Head of [Commission] for Prisoners' Affairs:
The government has approved the revoking of its decision to appoint Minister Shawqi Issa supervisor of the Ministry of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs, based on the presidential decree published on the matter, which states that it [the Ministry] is to be transformed from a ministry subordinate to the Palestinian government into a Supreme National Commission of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO and supervised by it and by the Palestinian presidency. The decree also states that Issa Karake, the former Minister of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs, is to be appointed head of this commission."
Click to view bulletin

Note: In an interview on Ajyal radio (independent Palestinian radio station), Karake confirmed that the PA Ministry of Prisoners Affairs was transformed into the Supreme National Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO, in an attempt to deflect international pressure on the PA on the issue of Palestinian terrorist prisoners who receive PA salaries. To view the interview, click here.
Karake appointed head of Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, part of ploy to shield PA from donor pressure on prisoner issue 
Source: Al-Ayyam, Aug. 31, 2014
     "Congratulations to the Head of the Commission of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs, Minister Issa Karake
Journalist Hakam Jum'a Al-Kharraz and the Al-Kharraz family in Tubas and Nablus congratulate Minister Issa Karake on the great faith President Abbas, may Allah protect him, has placed in him by appointing him head of the Commission of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs.
May Allah grant you success in serving the people of your homeland in supporting the prisoners' and released prisoners' issue. We wish our brave prisoners a swift release from the occupation prisons and [we wish] for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital."
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Note: In an interview on Ajyal radio (independent Palestinian radio station), Karake confirmed that the PA Ministry of Prisoners Affairs was transformed into the Supreme National Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO, in an attempt to deflect international pressure on the PA on the issue of Palestinian terrorist prisoners who receive PA salaries. To view the interview, click here.
PA to use international funding to pay salaries of Hamas military 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 31, 2014
     ‎“Hamas is demanding that approximately ‎‎42,000 employees it has employed in ‎various Palestinian institutions since its ‎takeover of the Gaza Strip [in 2007] be ‎added to the official PA payroll. According ‎to Palestinian sources, approximately ‎‎20,000 of them work in the military ‎sector.
Yet the Palestinian official said the ‎government was contending with the ‎problem of raising the funds necessary [to ‎pay] such a large number of employees, in ‎addition to fears that ‘paying Hamas ‎employees would be detrimental to the PA ‎treasury.’ The official added that ‘the world ‎defines Hamas as a ‘terrorist’ ‎‎[organization], and the government ‎wishes to [secure] guarantees that would ‎enable the PA to pay these salaries.’‎
‎[PA] Government spokesman Ehab ‎Bessaiso... said: ‘The ‎solution to the problem depends on ‎international guarantees that will be given ‎to facilitate the raising of the funds, as ‎well as on guarantees that will protect the ‎PA Finance [Ministry] from external ‎accusations regarding international law.... Nonetheless, we ‎are trying to transfer payments to these ‎workers, who number approximately ‎‎42,000.’ According to Bessaiso, the sum ‎total of the PA monthly salaries amounts ‎to approximately 700 million shekels (200 ‎million dollars) [parenthesis in source], of ‎which approximately 400 million shekels ‎‎(120 million dollars) [parenthesis in ‎source] come from taxes collected by ‎Israel for the PA. Of that sum, 200 million ‎shekels (about 57 million dollars) ‎‎[parenthesis in source] are collected ‎internally, while another approximately 35 ‎million dollars come from donations from ‎abroad.‎”‎
From Agence France-Presse

Palestinian minister confirms PA ploy to continue terrorist salaries 
Source: Ajyal radio (independent Palestinian station), Aug. 30, 2014
Director of PLO Commission of Prisoners’ Affairs , Issa Karake: "‎[Incorporating the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs] into the PLO may give ‎‎[the prisoners' issue] new power and new momentum, even with the relations with the ‎international community and with several parties that have attempted to exert pressure ‎on the PA in recent years, claiming that the Palestinian government has been ‎allocating some of its funds for the prisoners’ families. This is a result of Israeli ‎pressure and Israeli propaganda, [which claims] these funds are being earmarked... for the benefit of the ‎families of the prisoners, whom they accuse of terrorism...‎"
Interviewer: "Would you say this formal change, in quotation marks, was done or ‎devised to avoid international pressure, which Israel pushed for?"
Karake: "‎[That’s] one of the reasons, yes... The Palestinian leadership was subject to real pressure... We told them [international donors] it ‎was a matter of freedom, a matter of fighter-prisoners, a matter of a national liberation ‎movement, and so the idea that it would be part of the PLO was conceived... The ‎Palestinian leadership, President Abbas and the members of the [PLO’s] Executive ‎Committee confirmed that this change would in no way affect the importance and ‎significance of the prisoners’ issue, neither in terms of politics and the struggle nor in ‎terms of the services [provided to the prisoners].‎"
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Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs now subordinate to the PLO, in ploy to deflect donor pressure on prisoner issue  
Source: PNN Palestine News Network (independent Palestinian news agency), Aug. 29, 2014
Headline: "Presidential decree turned Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs into National Commission and appointed Karake Minister of [the Commission]"
     "Palestine News Network [PNN] has learned that President Mahmoud Abbas has published a presidential decree which will turn the Palestinian Ministry of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs from a ministry that is subordinate to the Palestinian government into a Supreme National Commission of Prisoners' and Released Prisoners' Affairs, which will be subordinate to the PLO and supervised by it and by the Palestinian presidency.
In addition, the decree appointed Issa Karake to head this authority, in the rank of minister.
Minister Karake will receive the responsibility of managing this commission, which will supervise and take care of the prisoners' issues in the various districts of the homeland."
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Note: In an interview on Ajyal radio (independent Palestinian radio station), Karake confirmed that the PA Ministry of Prisoners Affairs was transformed into the Supreme National Commission of Prisoners' Affairs, subordinate to the PLO, in an attempt to deflect international pressure on the PA on the issue of Palestinian terrorist prisoners who receive PA salaries. To view the interview, click here.
PA Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs: 7,000 Palestinians in Israeli prisons, 477 serving life sentences 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 27, 2014
     ‎“The Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs said ‎yesterday [Aug. 26, 2014] that the number ‎of Palestinian prisoners and detainees in ‎the occupation prisons has reached ‎‎7,000… The Ministry’s statement clarified ‎that 60 of the prisoners had been released ‎as part of the deal for the captured Israeli ‎soldier, Gilad Shalit… 477 prisoners are ‎serving life sentences.”‎

Note:‎ In October 2011, the Israeli government agreed to release 1,027 Palestinian prisoners ‎from Israeli prison in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held ‎hostage by Hamas for more than 5 years.‎ Dozens of the terrorists released in that deal were rearrested in June 2014, following the ‎abduction of Israeli teens Eyal Yifrach, 19, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Naftali Frenkel, 16.‎
Abbas: PA pays salaries to civil servants in Gaza, including 60-70 thousand who ‎aren’t currently working 
Source: Sada El-Balad TV (Egypt)‎, Aug. 23, 2014

PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas was ‎interviewed by the Egyptian
Sada El-‎Balad TV channel:‎
Sada El-Balad TV host: “Mr. President, honestly, and tell me clearly in front of everyone ‎‎– did Egypt, at any point, say ‘we’ll disarm or agree to disarm the Resistance?’”‎
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas: “It [Egypt] never said that. It was the US Secretary of ‎State who once said that to me … He told me: ‘Disarm.’ I told him: ‘Yes, once I have ‎one state, one law, one rifle and one government, then you ask me to disarm. Not now. ‎Give me a state and then I’ll decide.’ Egypt didn’t demand this – Israel did… Since [Hamas’] coup against the PA (in 2007), and until today, we’ve been transferring more than 50% of our [PA] budget to Gaza, including [salaries] to 60-70,000 [PA] civil servants who aren’t working. They are [in the Gaza Strip] and are receiving salaries. We pay them because they stopped working, so Hamas came and appointed other people in their place."
Click to view video

The average monthly salary for a PA civil servant was 2,882 shekels ($795) as of 2011. [Life and the Market supplement to Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011] The 60,000 PA workers receive $47 million a month - not to work.
Ministry: Salaries will be paid according to new regulation starting in July 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 13, 2014
     “The Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs said yesterday [June 12, 2014] that the released prisoners’ salaries would be paid according to the new regulation starting from the beginning of this coming July, following the agreement reached between the government and the Released Prisoners’ Committee.
The Ministry explained that after a series of meetings and discussions, an agreement was reached which will serve a large number of released prisoners, and [that] a period of 6 months was granted the prisoners who had not finished [filling out] their documents, so that they may fulfill all the conditions and benefit from the decision. The Ministry called on all prisoners affected by the regulation to turn to its centers in all districts of the homeland as soon as possible to obtain the approved form, fill it out and attach the required documents, [adding that] married prisoners must bring their marriage contracts.”
Fatah official confirms: Change from PA "Ministry" to PLO "Commission" is a ploy to avoid donor pressure to stop prisoners' salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 11, 2014
     "At a press conference he organized at the Fatah faction headquarters in Ramallah yesterday, [Fatah Central Committee member Azzam] Al-Ahmad told Al-Hayat Al-Jadida that 'the decision to close the Ministry of Information was made in the past and will soon be implemented.' In addition, he said that it had been decided to transform the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs into a commission subordinate to the PLO, in the wake of international pressure aimed at preventing the payments to the prisoners in the occupation...
Al-Ahmad rejected the attempts to cast doubt on the leadership's position regarding support of the prisoners, and said: 'We stopped the negotiations after Israel refused to release the last group of prisoners, and they are the "apple of our eye."'
Al-Ahmad noted that in the past, problems had arisen with donor countries regarding the aid to the Martyrs' families, and that their files had therefore been transferred to the PLO. He added: 'In recent months, there have been attempts on the part of the donors to exert pressure [on us] to stop the payments to the prisoners in the occupation prisons, causing us to transfer the issue of the prisoners back to the prisoners' and Martyrs' (Shahids') original mother [organization] (the PLO) [parenthesis in source].'
He noted that the national efforts must lead to getting rid of the Oslo Accords and their results, and said: 'We don't want any council, government or chairman based on the Oslo Accords; we want a state president, a state parliament and a state government. Even if they try to prevent us from [achieving] this, we have original solutions.'
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For the complete translation, click "full article."
PA pays prisoners a total of $12 million a month 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 11, 2014
Fatah spokesman Ahmad Assaf: "The Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs established under the PA has the third largest monthly budget in the PA. It's the third largest PA government ministry. Over 40 million shekels (i.e., 12 million dollars) a month, which the PA pays the prisoners, the released prisoners and their families."
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PA spokesman confirms: Change from PA "Ministry" to PLO "Commission" is a change in name only, salaries will continue 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 5, 2014
PA TV host: "What was proposed on the issue of the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs, and that it should be under the PLO?"
PA government spokesman Ehab Bessaiso: "The change of the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs into the Commission of Prisoners' Affairs is not the [PA] government's issue, but the PLO's issue. The Palestinian government is part of the PLO... [The change] will provide political and legal cover for this issue. In addition, it eliminates the many arguments made by many parties, who always try to say that [foreign] aid money [to the PA] is going to the prisoners, to cover the prisoners' expenses. We all owe it to the prisoners to protect their rights and fulfill their due. They spend years in prison and pay the price. The question isn't the name, or the role, but rather, the framework for the political distribution of roles regarding these issues. When we talk about the prisoners, we are talking about a basic component of Palestinian political activity."
PA TV host: "None of the prisoners' rights will change. Only the name has changed. Instead of calling it "Ministry," we call it "Commission," but the [prisoners'] salaries will continue to flow, everything will continue - all the allowances... People are concerned about their livelihood; that it may be cut off. We clarify it for them that nothing will harm the prisoners; their rights - under a ministry that became a commission - will remain the same."
PA government spokesman Ehab Bessaiso: "If you want me to put it simply, then yes, that was [put] simply."
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PA prime minister denies statement published in his name that Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs will be turned into an authority 
Source: Quds Press international News Agency, June 3, 2014
     “The Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Consensus [Government], Rami Hamdallah, denied what was published in his name yesterday [June 6, 2014] by the PA’s official news agency, about the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs having been closed and [about the] action being taken to transform it into an authority subordinate to the PLO – a move which Hamas, in an initial response, termed a ‘coup against the reconciliation.’ At a press conference held after the first meeting of the National Consensus Government on Tuesday morning [June 3, 2014], Hamdallah said that what the media outlets had discussed with respect to the transformation of the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] into an ‘authority’ was incorrect, and added: ‘turning the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] into an authority is under the PLO’s authority, not the government’s. The Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] still exists, and is run by Minister of Social Affairs Shawqi Issa,’ he said.
WAFA, the official PA news agency, noted yesterday that the Prime Minister of the National Consensus Government, Rami Hamdallah had said, in private statements made a few hours after being sworn in, that it had been decided to transform the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs into an ‘authority’ subordinate to the PLO, and that the task of overseeing it has been entrusted to Minister of Social Affairs Shawqi Issa until the process of its transformation has been completed.”
PA official: Abbas has increased budget for prisoners fivefold 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 2, 2014
     “[PA] Deputy Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Ziyad Abu Ein said that the Ministry exists and will not be closed until its status is determined, whether through the creation of a Prisoners’ [Affairs] Commission or by leaving it as it is. In a statement to Ma’an, he added: ‘The Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] still exists in the makeup of the new government and is operating as an institution with all its elements. A discussion was held regarding its replacement with a supreme commission, but no presidential decree has been issued on the matter.’ He went on and said: ‘I am surprised by and condemn all the noise [being made] around the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs], especially since it has not been closed, but [rather], there are thoughts to replace it with a commission whose powers will be no less than that of the Ministry. In addition, the prisoners’ issue is receiving double support from the President [Mahmoud Abbas], since Mahmoud Abbas has increased its budget fivefold.’”
PA prime minister announces Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs will be turned into a commission 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 2, 2014
     “[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said that the government has decided to turn the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] into a commission, and that the task of overseeing it has been entrusted to Minister of Social Affairs Shawqi Issa until the process of its transformation has been completed.”
Fatah official: Arab countries support prisoners' salaries, but some European countries think it "isn't in their interests" 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 2, 2014
Official PA TV program The State of Politics hosted Deputy Secretary of the Fatah Central Committee and Head of the Supreme Council for Sport and Youth Affairs Jibril Rajoub, who spoke about the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation and mentioned the issue of the transfer of money to Palestinian prisoners.
Deputy Secretary of the Fatah Central Committee and Head of the Supreme Council for Sport and Youth Affairs Jibril Rajoub: “There are Arab and Islamic countries for whom this issue [the transfer of money to prisoners] – there is no dispute about supporting it. You know some of the European countries, they think this isn’t in their interests, and they don’t want it, okay?”
Whether the PA pays the salaries or the PLO pays the salaries, "It makes no difference" 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2014
     "Abu Ein emphasized that the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs will continue to operate in its present form until the publication of the [presidential] decree. He noted that according to law, when no Minister of Prisoners' Affairs is appointed, the Prime Minister is entrusted with the prisoners' affairs portfolio."
[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 1, 2014]

     "The Secretary-General of Fatah's Revolutionary Council, Amin Maqbul... emphasized that the Prisoners' Affairs Commission will enjoy all the powers that the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs had."
[Ma'an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 2, 2014]

     "[Fatah Central Committee member Azzam] Al-Ahmad said: '... There is no room for argument over the prisoners' issue. It makes no difference whether it will be a Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs, or a Commission, or an association."
[Ma'an, independent Palestinian news agency, June 2, 2014]
 
PA to transfer handling of prisoners' salaries to PLO in order to negate “the interference of the donor countries” 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, June 1, 2014
Deputy Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Ziyad Abu Ein: "Who else has elevated the cause of the Palestinian prisoners other than President Mahmoud Abbas? All the laws, the tenfold increase of the budget of the Ministry of Prisoners' [Affairs] was done during the tenure of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and according to the wishes of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas...
If we go back to the source, which is the PLO, which will take care of the [prisoner] issue... we eliminate the international pressure and the attempts to tamper with this issue, so sensitive and holy to our Palestinian people. The [Palestinian] leadership wants to keep this holy issue away from the influence of the donor countries, the interference of the donor countries, and the occasional negative influence of the donor countries, by giving it [the prisoner issue] its holiness and assigning it to the leadership of the struggle of our Palestinian people. Who is the leadership of the struggle of our Palestinian people? The PLO... All the authority, all the laws, the budget, the officials and staff will be a part of the Prisoners and Released Prisoners' Commission, which will belong to the PLO, to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and to the Executive Committee of the PLO."
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New measure will negate US Congress “attempt to blackmail the PA;” “prisoners 'would not feel any change'” 
Source: Al-Ayyam, June 1, 2014
Al-Ayyam reporting on the PA decision to transfer handling of prisoners' salaries to the PLO
     "The new situation would make possible the provision of new resources to support prisoners' issues, without allowing forces of the US Congress or some European parliaments to attempt to blackmail the PA or to take steps against it.' Furthermore, these sources predicted that prisoners "would not feel any change," but rather improvement of their situation would be the case, as the PA would be able "to act towards meeting their demands and defending their rights more efficiently and flexibly."
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PA attempts to avoid donor pressure by transferring the responsibility for paying monthly prisoner salaries of 27 mill shekels from the PA to the PLO 
Source: Wattan News Agency, May 31, 2014
     "The decision [to transfer the payments from the PA to the PLO] is the PA's response to Israeli pressure to which it has been subjected for a long time, specifically, non-stop criticism of the [PA's] support of the prisoners, which it [Israel] considers 'support of terrorism,' as well as the protests Israel has voiced through the media against the great honor the released prisoners receive at the reception in the Palestinian Presidential Headquarters...
Deputy Minister of Prisoners' Affairs [Abu Ein] emphasized that the prisoners' and released prisoners' affairs portfolio 'will be transferred to the PLO leadership instead of remaining under [the authority of] a government of technocrats, and that this would also avoid the pressure being exerted on the PA by the donor countries, which oppose the transfer of their money to prisoners...'
On another issue, [Deputy Minister of Prisoners' Affairs] Abu Ein said that the [total sum] of the salaries of the released prisoners, who number over 5,000, 'exceeds 10 million shekels a month, a large part of which goes to people occupying senior positions in the private sector, including directors of banks, companies, non-governmental institutions and media institutions.' He added: 'the principle says that the government must employ people, and not pay salaries without results...'
Abu Ein said that the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs transfers approximately 27 million shekels a month to the prisoners in the occupation prisons, to pay for salaries and expenses."
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EU countries contribute €16.4 million to the PA's payment of salaries 
Source: WAFA news agency, May 6, 2014
The following article appeared on WAFA's English website:
    "Today the European Union has contributed approximately €16.4 million to the payment of the April salaries and pensions of approximately 70,000 Palestinian civil servants and pensioners of the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The contribution, made through the PEGASE mechanism, is funded by the European Union (€7.05 million) and the governments of Denmark (DKK 40 million or c.€5.36 million), Ireland(€1.0 million), Italy (€1.0 million), Luxembourg (€1.0 million) and The Netherlands (c.€0.98 million earmarked specifically for salaries in the Justice sector).
'The EU has consistently sought both to help ensure the well-being of the Palestinian population and – in the context of a commitment to a two-state solution – engage in Palestinian institution-building,' said the EU Representative in Palestine John Gatt-Rutter. 'Over many years the EU has proven to be Palestinian people's most reliable partner. The predictability of our financial support has always been guaranteed despite the very unpredictable political climate', he added...
Most of the European Union's assistance to the Palestinian Authority is channeled through PEGASE, the financial mechanism launched in 2008 to support the PA Reform and Development Plan (2008-2010) and the subsequent PA Palestinian National Plan (2011-2013). As well as helping to meet a substantial proportion of its running costs, European funds support major reform and development programmes in key ministries, to help prepare the PA for statehood.
Since February 2008, around €1.59 billion have been disbursed through the PEGASE Direct Financial Support programmes. In addition, the EU has provided assistance to the Palestinian people through UNRWA and a wide range of cooperation projects."
To read more, click "full article.''
US Assistant Secretary of State gives incorrect testimony to Congress about PA salaries to terrorists 
Source: House Committee on Foreign Affairs' website, Apr. 29, 2014
Excerpts from testimony by Assistant Secretary of State, Ambassador Anne W. Patterson at congressional subcommittee hearing:
Congressman Weber: Ambassador Patterson, do you have a dollar figure on the amount of stipends... going to the terrorists in prison and the salaries?
Assistant Secretary Patterson: No I don't have a figure, this is, they pay families whose relatives are imprisoned and then they do pay some of these people after they're released and I don't have that figure...
Congressman Weber: If the PA is paying for terrorists in prison, we ought to also be willing to hit them with some economic sanctions of that sort, don't you agree?
Assistant Secretary Patterson: Sir, I think this obviously is a difficult problem, and when they pay the families of people that are in prison and they pay stipends... I frankly know that they're going to try and phase that out and we should give them an opportunity to do so.
Congressman Weber: But we can help them phase that out. We could give them some encouragement... Who brought this to light that they were paying terrorists in prison and the families of terrorists, the PA was, do you know?
Assistant Secretary Patterson: I don't know.
Congressman Weber: Why do you think we haven't acted on it to date?
Assistant Secretary Patterson: Because I think, one, that it is a political issue for the Palestinians, that these people are in jail, they have to provide for the families, and again I think that they plan to phase it out.
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Official PA daily announces amendments to the Prisoners' Law 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 23, 2014
     “The end of the meetings of the professional ministerial committee for the Released Prisoners’ Law was announced yesterday [April 22, 2014]. The results show that the Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Law, which took effect at the beginning of 2014, apparently does not contradict the provisions of the law, and that the financial implications which had been discussed in figures were not realistic.
After the discussions, [the committee] agreed to make amendments to several simple sections which had not been at the center of the controversy surrounding the law – the most important of these [amendments] being the cancellation of the additional sum [allocated] to wives and children in the Regulation for Securing Employment for Prisoners, and the fixing of the salary for married men at 2,000 shekels and for bachelors at 1,500.
According to a statement issued by the [Palestinian] Prisoners’ Club, the recommendations reached by the committee with the relevant parties, will be submitted to the government for approval, so that the law will take effect in the beginning of this June [2014], and retroactively from the beginning of the year, following the updating of all the data relating to the prisoners.”
PA terrorist salaries are not social aid for families confirms wife of prisoner 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Apr. 17, 2014
Journalist interviewing prisoner's wife: "What is your story, dear sister?"
Prisoner's wife: "It's not just me, this problem, many of the prisoners' wives and children suffer from it, from the transfer of his salary, the prisoner's salary (Arabic: Ma'ash)... My husband is sentenced [to prison] and I have five children… It's already a year I suffer greatly, because he transferred the salary (Ma'ash), that is the allowance (Mukhassas), to his family."
Journalist Roba Al-Najjar: "When did he transfer the power of attorney for the allowance (Mukhassas) [to his family]? How long after his arrest?"
Prisoner's wife: "It's been four years. At first I did not have it [power of attorney] and later on I had it. After that, it was transferred to a different person. That other person is from his family. There are conditions, that is, when they send me money... They delay [the money] and make excuses: 'Today, tomorrow...' It's hard for me and I suffer greatly. I tried to work… I went to the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs and told them my problem. They told me: 'We cannot do anything unless he personally transfers it to you.'"
PA Minister Issa Karake: "In the past few years, there have been social problems and the current procedure in the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs is that the prisoner determines who has the power of attorney…”
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Note: To view a longer excerpt of the interview, click "full article" below.
EU donated 200 million Euros a year to help pay salaries for PA civil employees 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Apr. 15, 2014
Official PA TV program The Economic Tour hosted EU Communication and Information Officer Shadi Othman.
EU Communication and Information Officer Shadi Othman: “First of all, the EU, [as part of] its relations with the Palestinian Authority, grants [the PA] a fixed annual amount to help pay salaries and pensions. In the last three years this has been around 200 million Euros a year, to help pay the salaries and pensions of Palestinian state employees, both in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.”

‎Note: Any financial assistance given to the Palestinian Authority frees up other funds to be used for ‎supporting terror and paying terrorist salaries, as Palestinian Media Watch has documented. Therefore, ‎any financial assistance given to the PA that is not conditioned on the cessation of incitement indirectly ‎funds terror and hate promotion.‎
PA reports Israel may withhold taxes equaling amount given to terrorists  
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 10, 2014
     “An Israeli government source confirmed to [Agence] France-Presse that ‘Israel is considering delaying a part of the tax money it transfers to the PA each month, in response to the Palestinians’ unilateral initiatives (i.e., Mahmoud Abbas’ signing of international conventions paving the way for a renewed attempt to gain UN statehood).’ The [Israeli] source, who wished to remain anonymous, added: ‘We believe that the fact that the PA awards large sums of money each month to the Palestinian prisoners and their families constitutes a form of support of terror. Therefore, we are considering withholding from the Palestinians the amount equivalent to that [monthly sum].’”
PA funds fertility treatments for released prisoners, who are “victims of the occupation” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 8, 2014
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake disclosed that the Palestinian government has allocated 150,000 shekels for fertility treatments to help prisoners who are having difficulties having children…
In an exclusive interview with Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Karake said: ‘We believed there were only a small number of prisoners in need of financial aid to have children through fertilization, but to our surprise, since the government announced it intends to assist prisoners in this matter, we have received requests from 60 prisoners in two months. This means we are dealing with a phenomenon worthy of attention, and scientific research must be conducted to discover the true reasons behind prisoner infertility…’
[PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs] Karake and Health Minister Jawad Awad signed an agreement to purchase an IVF service for the wives of released male prisoners and for released female prisoners who are unable to conceive naturally. The National Fund for Aiding and Supporting Released Palestinian Prisoners and their Families will cover the financial costs…
He [Karake] explained that the government assigns special importance to the prisoners’ issue... because caring for the prisoners is a national, pan-Arab and human duty and is part of defying the occupation…
Karake expressed his opposition to all the Zionist attempts to pressure the PA and place it under financial siege for caring for the prisoners and their families. He said: ‘The prisoners are prisoners of freedom and warrior prisoners, as established by the four Geneva Conventions, which we submitted requests to join. The prisoners are victims of the occupation and the world must act to make this occupation vanish.'”

To read more, click "full article."
PA Prime Minister Hamdallah and PA government “saluted heroic prisoners,” promising them “life in dignity” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 2, 2014
     “During its weekly meeting, which was held in Ramallah yesterday [April 1, 2014], [and] chaired by [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah… the government respectfully and admiringly saluted our heroic prisoners in the occupation prisons, and also proudly saluted our released prisoners, who have spent years of their lives [in prison] and inscribed remarkable stories of heroism [on the pages of history]…
In accordance with the leadership’s position, which places the issue of the prisoners at the top of its priorities, and in accordance with the President’s [Mahmoud Abbas’] instructions, the government emphasizes its commitment to implement the Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Law, and to take any [steps] that may enable the prisoners, the released [prisoners] and their families to live in dignity, out of loyalty to their sacrifice.”
PA daily: Monthly payments to families of Martyrs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Mar. 6, 2014
     “An agreement exists, signed in 2011 with former prime minister Dr. Salam Fayyad, which states that priority must be given to the salaries of the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) immediate families as follows: A Martyr’s salary is 1,400 shekels, with an addition of 400 for his wife and 200 for his son or daughter, as well as an addition of 300 shekels for [residents] of Jerusalem and the interior (i.e., Israel). In addition, [families] of Martyrs in the diaspora are to receive a salary of 350 dollars, with an addition of $100 for the wife and 50 for the son or daughter.”
PA-funded Prisoners' Club: Israelis taught international donors everything about PA salaries for prisoners 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Feb. 17, 2014
Chairman of the Prisoners' Club, Qadura Fares:
     "Our second message is directed to the EU, international organizations and to the UN. They know by heart what the Israelis taught them. This is a disgrace. The Israelis (i.e., PMW reports) taught them and explained to them that the PA pays such and such canteen [amount] and pays such and such a salary to a prisoner [imprisoned] four years... When we meet with European, American or UN officials they question us. They know the stuff by heart because the Israelis taught them and explained to them that the PA supports -- according to Liberman's and Netanyahu's claims -- so-called "terrorists"... Minister [of Prisoners' Affairs] Issa Karake remembers that the British Minister of [International Relations and] Cooperation asked us about the Dadash company -- the Dadash company that operates the canteens. Meaning, they know all these facts by heart."
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PA allocates an additional $46 million for terrorists in 2014 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 6, 2014
     "[PA] Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake said that it has been decided that the budget for the fifth regulation [of the Prisoners' Law] approved by the government will be set this coming April [2014]. [The fifth regulation] completes the remaining implementing regulations of the Prisoners' Law, and is concerned with improving conditions for released [prisoners]. This will be done as an appendix to the [general] budget, so its implementation will begin this year and [apply] retroactively.
Karake noted that the government has acknowledged the importance of the regulation and the need to implement it according to the rules. However, due to the large budget deficit and the PA's financial situation, establishing the budget, which has been estimated at 160 million shekels a year, has been postponed until April. [He added that] a ministerial committee has been appointed to prepare the appendix to the budget.
Karake emphasized that this regulation will contribute considerably to solving many problems that prisoners face after their release... Likewise, he noted that the government has made the prisoners' issue one of its priorities and is investing all its efforts in easing their suffering given what is available (i.e., availability of funds).
Karake thanked the President [Abbas] and the Prime Minister [Hamdallah] for their great efforts and for their [accepting] responsibility for the prisoners' cause, whether at a political or social level, or at the livelihood level. On another matter, Karake said that the government has approved a regulation for exempting released prisoners who have served more than 20 years in occupation prisons from paying customs duty, as well as a regulation for covering the costs of fertility [treatments] for released prisoners who are suffering from fertility problems."
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Palestinian attempted terrorist admits he sought to die a “Martyr” so his family would get financial compensation from the PA 
Source: PMW, Feb. 2, 2014
The following is the transcript from  Israeli Police’s questioning of a Palestinian man Khaled Rajoub, who sought to kill Israeli soldiers solely for the financial rewards it would bring his family as the family of a “Martyr.” He described his high debt and decided the only way to financially care for his family would be to receive financial rewards of those who have attacked Israelis and died in the act. Khaled Rajoub’s statements show that PA financial rewards “incentivize” terror.
The following is a transcript from the interrogation of Khaled Rajoub. PMW received and translated an Arabic copy of the transcript of the questioning:

Khaled Rajoub: “I want to tell you honestly, and from the end. I am a man with a family of seven, including me and my wife. I don’t work, and I’ve accumulated large debts, and am unable to pay them off. I reached a point where if my son wants a shekel, I have nothing to give to him. Therefore I decided to die – no matter how, by hanging, in any way, [just] to die. I thought about it and said to myself that if I die by hanging, or in any other way, I won’t get anything out of it, so I decided to do something serious, such as commit murder, something in which I’ll kill, and I’ll also die, and then my family will get money and will live comfortably, in other words something will come of my death. In the end I decided to kill Israeli soldiers…"
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Click "full article" for a longer transcript of Rajoub's interrogation
PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs explains prisoners’ salaries and benefits to French Consul 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 22, 2014
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs] Issa Karake brought Consul General of France Herve Magro up to date about the prisoners’ and detainees’ suffering, which is caused by the occupation’s policy…
Regarding Ministry services provided to the prisoners, Karake added that the Ministry is working on developing the services to the detainees, which begin with legal defense in the Israeli occupation courts, continue with providing canteen [money] and salaries and with providing medical services to prisoners in prison and after their release, in addition to training and employing them.”
PA funds fertility treatments for prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 10, 2014
     “During its weekly meeting held yesterday [Jan. 9, 2014], chaired by Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah… the government decided to make the Ministry for Prisoners’ [Affairs], the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Finance responsible for coordinating between them the aid to prisoners and released prisoners who are having trouble producing offspring.”
PA pays released prisoners $2,000 per year of imprisonment 
Source: Al-Ayyam, Dec. 30, 2013
     “The [Palestinian] Authority pays each released prisoner who was released in the previous phases between 40 to 60 thousand dollars, meaning, approximately 2,000 dollars for each year [of imprisonment], in order to improve his financial situation, and they are considered [part] of the National Security Forces.
However, these prisoners and detainees, who spent long years in the occupation prisons, undergo no social [rehabilitation] program or guidance program, because the prisoner is seen as a hero by society.
Chairman of the Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares said: ‘Psychological and social rehabilitation is done for those who were imprisoned for theft and murder issues.’
He added: ‘However, in the case of [security] prisoners, some [people ] reject this [rehabilitation program] because of the prisoner’s holiness and importance in the eyes of society.’”
From Agence France-Presse

Note: In August 2013, Israel agreed to release 104 Palestinian terrorists from prison, which was the PA's precondition for renewing peace talks. The terrorists were released in stages. The first group of 26 was released on Aug. 13, 2013. The second group of 26 was released on Oct. 30, 2013. The third group of 26 was released on Dec. 30, 2013.
Relatives of terrorists receive university scholarships 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 25, 2013
PA TV program Palestine this Morning talked to Director of the Al-Quds Open University’s Tulkarem branch Ziyad Al-Tanni about scholarships given by the university to certain groups.
Ziyad Al-Tanni: “There are many scholarships. We can’t mention them all in detail at this time. But there is the Fellowship scholarship. There is the scholarship for a son, daughter and wife of a prisoner and a Martyr (Shahid). There is a scholarship for disabled, a scholarship for political prisoners, the Foundation’s scholarship, the President’s scholarship, the Board of Trustee’s scholarship. We have more than 20 [scholarships.] And the truth is that in the Tulkarem branch, the [total sum of] students’ scholarships amounts to more than 200,000 dinars (approximately 282,000 US dollars) – in the Tulkarem branch. And at the entire university level the [total sum] amounts to more than 3 million dinars (approximately 4.24 million US dollars) a year, and may amount to more than 4 million dinars (5.65 million US dollars) a year.”
Fatah official: 85% of donor money goes toward PA salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 25, 2013
     “Fatah Central Committee member and Chairman of the Arab American University Board of Trustees Muhammad Shtayyeh gave MBA students a lecture on ‘Development in Palestine in the Shadow of Occupation’… He noted that the PA is currently paying the salaries of 172,000 civil servants and that to date, 23 billion dollars have arrived from donor states, 85% of which were used to pay salaries. 5 billion dollars of these funds were used to fund non-governmental organizations.”
PA law grants promotions in rank to terrorist prisoners from PA Security Services 
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Dec. 12, 2013
The following is a summary by PA Judge Ali Abu Diyak, head of the Consulting and Legislation Office, (PA governmental body), of the most important clauses in PA law and regulation entitled "Securing Jobs for Released Prisoners in [the PA] Government, Decision No. 15 of 2013, which standardized ranks and salaries for released Palestinian prisoners, i.e., terrorists.
The judge's summary was published by WAFA, the official Palestinian Authority news agency. Article written by Judge Ali Abu Diyak, head of the Consulting and Legislation Office, a Palestinian Authority governmental body providing consultation on matters of legislation.
Click to view in PDF

Headline: "Spotlight on the Regulation Securing Jobs for Released Prisoners"
     "[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah published the Regulation Securing Jobs for Released Prisoners in [the PA] Government, Decision No. 15 of 2013 on Nov. 12, 2013. It took effect beginning on the date of its publication in the Records, and it was published in issue 103 of the Records, which was published on Dec. 8, 2013. This regulation was based on Decision with Legal Validity No. 1 of 2013 regarding the amendment to the Prisoners' and Released [Prisoners'] Law, which President [Mahmoud Abbas] of the State of Palestine issued on Jan. 8, 2013, and which was published in issue no. 99 of the Records, which were published on Feb. 27, 2013."
Click to view bulletin
 
Click "full article" for a longer excerpt from the document
EU donates €11 million for PA salaries and pensions 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 6, 2013
Headline: “The European Union grants 11 million euros to pay [PA] salaries and pensions”
     “Yesterday [Dec. 5, 2013] the European Union donated approximately 11 million euros to pay the November salaries and pensions of approximately 71,000 Palestinian government employees and pensioners in the [West] Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The Office of the European Union Representative noted in a press release that this contribution will be transferred through the European Commission’s PEGASE mechanism, by the European Union (10 million euros) and the Government of the Netherlands (1 million euros, earmarked for the PA Justice sector salaries).”
From WAFA, official PA news agency
Laws to help released prisoners “will be implemented according to the financial capabilities of the PA” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 5, 2013
Headline: “Karake: We are striving to set regulations for [the benefit of] released prisoners and the prisoners in prison”
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs] Issa Karake disclosed that the compilation of regulations approved by the government over the last four years (the most recent being a regulation concerning released prisoners)... were completed according to legal principles and procedures and will be implemented according to the financial capabilities of the [Palestinian] Authority. Karake noted that caring for prisoners and their families is a top priority in the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs] and in the government, in spite of the financial and economic difficulties they face. He added that in spite of the present challenges, important interest in the prisoners' situation has been developing, and he referred to a proposal to be presented to the government regarding [the establishment of] a fund aimed at obtaining assistance for prisoners and their families...
Karake was speaking during his visit with a number of families of veteran prisoners in the village of Qatanna, in the Jerusalem district...
Karake and his delegation visited the family of brother prisoners 53-year-old Abd Al-Jawad Yusuf Shamasneh and 47-year-old Muhammad Yusuf Shamasneh, who in 1993 were sentenced to three life sentences plus twenty years and are imprisoned in the Nafha prison. They are both among the prisoners who are to be released in the next phases.”

Note: In August 2013, Israel agreed to release 104 Palestinian terrorists from prison, which was the PA's precondition for renewing peace talks. The terrorists were released in stages. The first group of 26 was released on Aug. 13, 2013. The second group of 26 was released on Oct. 30, 2013. The third group of 26 was released on Dec. 30, 2013.
For descriptions of the terrorists, click "full article" below.
PA deducts benefits from salaries of 12,000 Gaza civil servants who weren't working 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Dec. 5, 2013
Headline: “Deductions from salaries of 12,000 civil servants: Ministry of Finance explains the reason, and some demand they be eliminated”
    “Civil servants complained about sums that were deducted from their salary, which was paid on Thursday. Citizen Abu Muhammad said bitterly, while standing in front of a bank in Gaza: ‘I was surprised that 500 shekels were deducted from my salary without my knowing why.’ One of the other civil servants speculated that these deductions are probably [the termination of] Directors’ bonuses and travel expense reimbursements… A [PA] Ministry of Finance announcement was released this evening, stating that in accordance with President Mahmoud Abbas’ instructions, the Ministry of Finance has stopped paying Directors’ bonuses and travel expense reimbursements to civil servants who are not working, in Gaza and the [West] Bank, and who therefore do not meet the conditions stipulated in the civil service law and the amendments to the law and the regulations that were made to implement it.
[PA] Minister of Finance Dr. Shukri Bishara said: ‘Savings have been introduced [by decreasing] travel expense reimbursements in a way that will not harm the civil servant’s base salary in any way.”
PA exempts released prisoners from paying university tuition and medical insurance 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 4, 2013
     “[At] its weekly meeting, convened yesterday [Dec. 3, 2013] in Ramallah [and] chaired by Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah, the [PA] government … approved the proposed revised regulation for exempting released prisoners from [paying] school and university tuition, [and from paying] medical insurance and training course fees, to show appreciation of their [the prisoners’] struggle and as part of the government’s pledge to provide our brave prisoners and their families with a dignified life.”
PA pays unemployed prisoners a salary of 7.5 million shekels a month 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Dec. 2, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake: "[Unemployment] is a problem for thousands of male and female prisoners... The law approved by the Palestinian Parliament in 2004 determined that a male prisoner who spends more than 5 years and a female prisoner who spends more than 3 years [in prison] - in case they cannot find a job - can receive the fixed monetary allowance until they find a job. This applies of course to thousands of released prisoners... The maximum amount of the allowance is around 2,000 shekels... The fixed salary is not a loan... This is a salary. True, it's low, but I'll give you a number: 7.5 million shekels (~ $2.1 M.) a month is what we will pay to unemployed released prisoners. 7.5 million shekels every month."
Click to view

Note: PA minimum wage is 1,450 shekels ($414) a month. The 2,000 shekels ($571) for released prisoners is 38% higher than the minimum wage.
PA PM meets with released murderers, promises to provide for “dignified lives” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 20, 2013
     “[PA] Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah met in the Prime Minister’s residence with prisoners from the Ramallah area, who were released in the second phase [of prisoner releases in 2013]. The meeting was attended by Minister of Prisoners’ [Affairs] Issa Karake and released prisoners Rafe’ Karajeh, Muhammad Nasr, Asrar Samrin, Ismat Mansour and Musa Qar’an… [Hamdallah] explained that the government would devote everything it could in order to provide dignified lives for the released [prisoners], despite the great financial difficulties and political challenges facing the Palestinian people, and he sent greetings to all male and female prisoners in the occupation prisons.”

Note: Rafe’ Karajeh and Muhammad Nasr murdered reserve soldier Aharon Avidar in a Ramallah market in February 1985. They were each serving life sentences, but were released in October 2013 among 104 prisoners whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
Asrar Samrin was serving a life sentence for the murder of Israeli citizen Tzvi Klein (Dec. 3,1991), but was released in October 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
Ismat Mansour assisted in the kidnapping and murder of Israeli civilian Haim Mizrahi (Oct. 23, 1993). He was serving 22 years in prison, but was released in October 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
Musa Qar’an drove terrorist Asrar Samrin to the place where he murdered Israeli citizen Tzvi Klein (Dec. 3, 1991). Qar’an was serving 28 years in prison, but was released in October 2013 as one of 104 terrorists whom Israel agreed to release to fulfill the PA's precondition for renewing negotiations.
Prisoners received small salaries and were exempt from certain payments under Yasser Arafat 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 12, 2013
Headline: “Prisoners’ families: ‘President Arafat’s decisions played a role in supporting the prisoner movement’”
     “Regarding memories about President Arafat’s unique positions regarding the prisoners’ cause, citizen [and] mother of Ibrahim Baroud, a member of the Prisoners’ Families Committee, said that she cannot forget his [Arafat’s] words, his decisions, and his directives in support of the prisoners’ rights. She stressed that at one of the meetings attended by a number of families, she asked about the veteran prisoners, and his answer was: ‘This has been left up to Israel’s good intentions.’ Later a question [was asked] about the prisoners’ salaries that at the time were [only] 300-500 shekels, even though the prisoners had a lot of expenses, and he said at the time: ‘Make a note, Kanafani’, meaning Marwan Kanafani (Arafat’s spokesman). Later one of the families asked to be exempted from having to pay electricity and water bills, and he answered: ‘Make a note, Kanafani.’ When the subject of canteen [expenses] that were paid for PLO prisoners only, was brought up, he answered: ‘Make a note, Kanafani: Payment without discrimination,’ and this has remained [the policy] until this very minute.’”
Increased financial benefits to terrorists are pending 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 12, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake
visiting released prisoner Abd Al-Rahman Al-Haj
     “[PA] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake announced that the prisoners’ issue is constantly and continuously on the government’s table, due to the great interest in this issue and to the search for every possibility to assist them as fighters who sacrificed for their homeland and country… Karake noted that in recent years the Ministry of Prisoners’ [Affairs], in cooperation with all institutions, enacted four implementing regulations of the prisoners’ law, and that the fifth regulation relating to the released prisoners is in the final stages of discussion by the Palestinian government... Karake related to a number of other proposals for regulations, which he hopes will be duly approved. They relate to university education in prisons, fertility services for released prisoners, salary completion and the establishment of a national fund to support prisoners and their families, alongside a regulation for deceased released prisoners. Karake spoke during his visits to a number of released prisoners, during which he delivered President [Abbas]’s Grant to them following their release as part of the second phase, and he also conveyed President Mahmoud Abbas’ and Prime Minister Dr. Rami Hamdallah’s greetings.”

For the complete translation with terrorist descriptions and PMW explanatory notes, click "full article."
PA official: There are 52 veteran prisoners in Israeli prisons 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 10, 2013
     “Head of the Statistics Department in the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs, Abd Al-Nasser Farawneh… noted that the ‘veteran prisoners’ list includes prisoners from all Palestinian areas, as it includes 26 prisoners from the [West] Bank, 14 from areas occupied in 1948 (i.e., Israel), 9 prisoners from Jerusalem, and 3 prisoners from the Gaza Strip. Prisoner Karim Younes from the areas occupied in 1948, who has been imprisoned since January 6, 1983, is the most veteran prisoner.”

Note: Karim Younes – an Israeli Arab serving a 40-year sentence for kidnapping and killing an Israeli soldier in 1980. Originally sentenced to life in prison, but Israeli President Shimon Peres reduced his sentence in 2012.
PA Minister defends PA giving money to terrorists, they are "heroes" 
Source: Official PA TV Live, Nov. 4, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake, at a rally under the auspices of Mahmoud Abbas in honor of released terrorists from Jenin:
     "The Europeans want their money that comes to us to remain clean -- not to go to families of those they claim to be terrorists. [They] need to renounce this occupation mentality. These [prisoners] are heroes, fedayyeen (self-sacrificing fighters), and fighters who fought so that we could live in dignity... These heroes, whom you are applauding, must live in dignity, so that we will continue to hold our heads high. We appreciate the people of the revolution and are proud of them."
Click to view video
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PA Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs: 1/3 of Palestinian prisoners belong to Fatah, 22% to Hamas 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Nov. 3, 2013
     “In a report published by the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs in the wake of 26 prisoners being released from occupation prisons, that focused on the prisoners’ cause and their numbers, it was noted that the total number of prisoners is 5,000 – one third belong to Fatah, 22% to Hamas, 10.3% to the Islamic Jihad, 7.3% to the Popular Front, and 2.2% to the Democratic Front.”

Note: PMW has recorded the percentages as they appear in the original Arabic, although they total only 75.1%, not 100%.
Palestinian Prisoners’ Club: Released prisoners don’t have to worry about livelihood  
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Oct. 30, 2013
PA TV program Palestine This Morning interviewed Chairman of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares who spoke about the prisoners’ life after their release:
     “The prisoners who have already been released [from prison] live dignified lives, and those who left [prison] in the [prisoner] exchange deal also live dignified lives. The Palestinian people should be proud that it has such a law, appendixes to such a law and regulations… It’s difficult to compensate [prisoners] for 25 and 30 years [of prison time.] But a prisoner who is released after all those years doesn’t [have to] worry about his livelihood and marriage, he can continue his life in a way befitting a Palestinian fighter who gave a great deal for the Palestinian people.”
Released prisoner: Salaries for prisoners and their families must continue 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 15, 2013
     “Released prisoner Tawfiq Abu Na’im said: ‘… In light of the difficult situation, and in spite of the wounds, we must be united in the common issues and put to use the mechanisms of [creating] solidarity with the prisoners and [obtaining] their release.’ In addition, he demanded to increase visits to their [the prisoners’] families during the [Festival of Sacrifice] holiday and stated the need to continue [paying] salaries (rawatib) to prisoners or released [prisoners] because the families rely mainly on these salaries.”

Note: Tawfiq Abu Na’im – convicted of kidnapping and murder and sentenced to on life sentence in May 1989. PMW has been unable to verify the specific circumstances of his crime. He was released in October 2011 in the Shalit exchange – in which the Israeli government agreed to release 1,027 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prison in exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held hostage by Hamas for more than 5 years.
PA: 52% of Palestinian prisoners in Israel are from Fatah, 10% from Hamas 
Source: Al-Ayyam, Oct. 13, 2013
Headline: “[There are] 5,000 prisoners in occupation prisons; 52% of them are from Fatah, and 10% Hamas”
     “A report issued by the [PA] Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs reported that there are 5,200 prisoners in 17 prisons, military camps, and detention centers, and that there has been an increase in arrests in recent years. From the beginning of this year [2013], 2,450 arrests have been recorded, among them 476 children and 49 female citizens.
The report explained that the number of prisoners from Fatah stands at 2,650, comprising 52% [of the total number of prisoners], among them 600 [PA] workers and military men employed by the Palestinian Authority institutions and forces; while the number of prisoners from Hamas stands at 1,100 comprising 10.4% (sic. The mistakes in calculating the percentages appear in the original Arabic. 1,100 prisoners make up 21.2% of the total number of prisoners –ed.), alongside 365 prisoners from the Popular Front, comprising 2.3%, and 250 prisoners from the other organizations and from prisoners languishing in interrogation centers, comprising 5%.”
26 prisoners thank Abbas for PA grant they received upon release 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 11, 2013
Headline: “Prisoners released in the latest phase will receive the Dignified Life Grant”
     “The 26 released prisoners who were released in the latest phase of pre-Oslo Accord veteran prisoner [releases] directed their thanks and appreciation to President Mahmoud Abbas and to Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah for the financial grant given to them on the occasion of their release. They all served more than 20 years in the occupation’s prisons…
The released [prisoners] praised the position of the government that continues its work to approve laws and regulations that will do them (the prisoners) justice, and discusses them objectively and responsibly and in a way that guarantees the prisoners’ rights and correlates with the available options. In addition, they said that this [grant] gives them hope.”

Note: In August 2013, Israel agreed to release 104 Palestinian prisoners, which was the PA's precondition for renewing peace talks. Israel agreed to release the prisoners in four stages.
4,762 prisoners receive PA salaries - October 2013 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 10, 2013
     “The [Palestinian] Prisoners’ Club published yesterday [Oct. 9, 2013] the occupation Prison Service’s statistics regarding the number of Palestinian prisoners held in occupation prisons. According to the statistics, the total number of prisoners before the month of September was 4,762…
Distribution according to prison sentence is as follows: 15 prisoners [were sentenced] to more than three months, 52 prisoners to 3-6 months, 50 to 6-9 months, 45 to 9-12 months, 211 to 1-2 years, 157 to 2-3 years, 151 to 3-5 years, 123 to 5-7 years, 250 to 7-10 years. There are 620 prisoners sentenced to 10-15 years in prison, 458 to 15-20 years. 440 prisoners were sentenced to more than 20 years and 561 were sentenced to a life sentence, and there are 1,601 who are still detainees.”
Abbas supports housing project for prisoners by granting exemption from licensing fees 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 7, 2013
Headline: “A Presidential exemption from license fees in the Neighborhood of Hope suburb is granted to prisoners serving life sentences”
     “Raeda Al-Fares, ‘Um-Jawwad’ [who is in charge of humanitarian aid in the President's office], yesterday visited the ‘Suburb of Hope’ housing project for prisoners serving life sentences in occupation prisons in order to offer financial aid to cover the cost of the land. The landowners were indeed given a check for US$15,000. Al-Fares toured the area and was updated on the progress of the project, and she noted that she was bringing news that the various official government ministries and agencies would be granting the housing project an exemption from paying licensing fees. She also explained that the decision to grant the exemption came from a direct order from President Mahmoud Abbas, as part of his efforts on behalf of the prisoners’ children and families. Al-Fares declared that as part of his efforts to relieve the daily worries of our people, President Abbas has instructed the different agencies on the need to enable work on the project to progress more easily, as [is also needed] in other essential projects serving the prisoner and prisoner-family sector. In addition, she noted that the Presidency will continue to accompany this project to its conclusion and until all the prisoners are released, so that they will be able to live in dignity with their families and relatives. Released prisoner Ibrahim Al-Zir, a member of the housing project’s Committee of Life-Sentenced Prisoners, thanked President Mahmoud Abbas for his moral and material support of this project, and noted that the grant he made today conveys a message of support from the father of the Palestinian people, to his children and their families. In addition, Al-Zir expressed his hope that the aid granted to this project, at a cost of $10,000,000, would continue…"
Abbas pushes forward prisoners’ law to provide prisoners with benefits 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 5, 2013
     “Fatah Executive Committee member Dr. Wasel Abu Yusuf referred to a letter sent by the [Palestinian] Prisoners’ Committee of the National and Islamic Forces in the Gaza Strip to [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas and the [Fatah] Executive Committee members regarding the released prisoners and their financial [problems] and health problems and also about payment of the Dignified Life Grant. [He] said that it (the letter) was presented at the Executive Committee’s meeting and was on its agenda’s list of priorities.
Dr. Abu Yusuf said that during its meeting, the Executive Committee expressed the need for continuing the campaign for the released prisoners’ rights, seeing that in its announcement after its October 2, 2013 meeting, the Executive Committee called for the resolution of all issues related to released prisoners’ rights, in order to guarantee them a dignified life.
Abu Yusuf, member of [the Fatah] Executive Committee and Secretary-General of the Palestinian Liberation Front, said that President Mahmoud Abbas published instructions for the relevant PA authorities, and the government first of all, to act immediately to finalize the prisoners’ law in order to guarantee them a dignified life.
In addition, Dr. Abu Yusuf noted that during its meeting, the Executive Committee emphasized the contents of the letter of the Prisoners’ Committee of the National and Islamic Forces in the Gaza Strip from September 28, 2013, regarding the suffering of the released prisoners, both veteran and new, and their right to insurance, a job and medical treatment. Likewise, he emphasized that President Mahmoud Abbas directed a message to [PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah [instructing him] to work to finalize the prisoners’ and released [prisoners’] law as soon as possible.”
Prisoners demand higher salaries and other “rights” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Oct. 1, 2013
     “Scores of released prisoners held a sit-down strike in front of the government building in Ramallah. They demanded the implementation of the amended Released Prisoners Law no. 19 of 2004, which states that justice must be done with released prisoners by employing them and by promoting them in government careers, like the rest of the PA employees.
Samir Matar, one of the sit-down strike coordinators, who spent 9 years in the occupation’s prisons, told Shasha News that the released prisoners demand the ‘implementation of the amended Released Prisoners Law, which was approved by President Mahmoud Abbas last year.’
Released prisoner Subhi Al-Baba, who spent more than 17 years in the occupation’s prisons, demanded that the prisoners’ salaries be made equal to those of PA employees, ‘so they would be able to make a living from them.’ He added: ‘The government made many promises to us, but unfortunately it didn’t keep its promises. It is our right to receive the honor worthy of the sacrifices we made for this homeland.’
Coordinator of the committee of the released prisoners holding the sit-down strike Shukri Ghanim stressed that the main demand is ‘implementing the amended Prisoners Law of 2004, that included employing released prisoners who spent more than five years in prison, integrating them and promoting them in the PA’s institutions.’”
PA PM Hamdallah vows to help the prisoners through grants and rehabilitation programs 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 9, 2013
     "[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah visited released prisoner Muhammad Al-Taj, who is receiving medical care in Vienna, in order to inquire about his health... Hamdallah, who is currently traveling through Europe to raise financial support for the PA, said that the government has not abandoned and will never abandon the brave prisoners who sacrificed years of their lives for the Palestinian cause and for our national goals: Freedom and establishing an independent Palestinian State whose capital is East Jerusalem. Hamdallah stressed that the government will make every possible effort to assist the prisoners, both by enlarging the grants they receive and by means of rehabilitation programs after their release... The Prime Minister noted that prisoner Al-Taj's poor health stems from the policy of intentional medical neglect adopted by the occupation against our prisoners in the prisons."
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Note: Muhammad Al-Taj - was sentenced to 14 years in prison. He was released due to medical reasons after serving two thirds of his prison term. It has not been possible to verify the crime for which Al-Taj was imprisoned.
PA PM Hamdallah announces upcoming release grant for prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 6, 2013
     "[PA] Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said that an appropriate monetary payment will be made in the coming days to cover part of the prisoners' release grants and fines (i.e., fines they have been fined by Israel), and he stressed that the prisoners' cause, their freedom and their rights must remain on the government's and leadership's list of priorities. After meeting with Head of the Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares yesterday [Sept. 5, 2013] in the Prime Minister's Office in Ramallah to discuss many topics concerning the prisoners and the latest developments in their condition, Hamdallah said that at the next cabinet meetings the Fifth Executive Regulation, which concerns prisoners, will be discussed, in order to approve it and begin its implementation. Similarly, the Prime Minister noted that the 'Dignified Life Grant' for released prisoners requires a resolution issued by President Mahmoud Abbas in order to arrange its payment, as per the fifth article of the Palestinian Basic Law. He said that he has presented the subject of the grant to the President in preparation for legislation that will deal with the matter."
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PA gives pre-Oslo prisoners a new grant to “reward their sacrifice” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Sept. 4, 2013
     “During its weekly meeting, convened yesterday [Sept. 3, 2013] in Ramallah and chaired by Dr. Rami Hamdallah, Prime Minister of the transitional [Palestinian] government… the government decided to give prisoners imprisoned before [the] Oslo [Accords] who were recently released, a grant as reward for them and their sacrifice, which will provide them with a fair and suitable standard of living.”
PA pays released prisoners Dignified Life Grant up to $50,000 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Aug. 22, 2013
Director, Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, Nael Ghannam, on the PA TV program Palestine This Morning:
     “This [Dignified Life Grant] is a one-time grant [for released prisoners]. The full amount will be paid over the next three years. The beneficiaries are released prisoners who served more than 5 years [in Israeli prisons]... One who served up to 10 years will receive $1,000 for each year [he was imprisoned]; between 11 and 15 years - it goes up to $1,500; between 15 and 20 years it goes up to $2,000, etc. The maximum total won't exceed $50,000.”
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Terrorist planned attack in order to be imprisoned and receive PA salary 
Source: Israel Police, Aug. 18, 2013
Transcript of terrorist's testimony,
in Israeli police report
Imprisoned Palestinian terrorist Husni Najjar explained to Israeli Police that he planned a second terror attack in order to be captured and imprisoned by Israel a second time, so that he would receive the salaries the PA pays to prisoners while in jail and following their release. The following is from his signed statement given to the police following his second arrest:

Prisoner Najjar: "And after [my] release [from prison]... I had a bank account with 45,000 shekels from [my] salary from the Palestinian Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs... and there remained a deficit of 30,000 shekels for the wedding... I decided to arrange an imaginary plan for the Israeli Shabak [Israel's General Security Service] so that I would be arrested... After I would spend five years [in prison] I would receive a salary of about 4,000 shekels [upon release], and this amount would be for three years. That means there would be a total amount of 135,000 shekels (the correct amount would equal 144,000 shekels - Ed.) and then I would cover my debts."
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PA pays released prisoners "at least 4,000 a month" and considers them "returning soldiers" 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 16, 2013
     "When Mustafa Al-Haj (prisoner who murdered a man who was out hiking) returned to his village 24 years after he killed a settler in the rocky hills overlooking his village, he found that the historical events of an entire generation had passed him by. Al-Haj was one of 26 citizens released by the occupation's forces in the early hours of Wednesday morning [Aug. 14, 2013] despite protests by families of Israelis killed in Palestinian attacks... The released prisoners received a hero's welcome in the West Bank by senior [Palestinian] Authority officials and by their relatives, most of whom were not able to see the prisoners during their time in the occupation's prison...
Money is not an immediate concern because the [Palestinian] Authority will pay at least 4,000 shekels a month to prisoners released after serving a long prison term, and considers them to be returning soldiers."
Reprinted from Reuters
Click to view bulletin

Note: Mustafa Al-Haj murdered Frederick Rosenfeld while he was hiking near the city of Ariel in the West Bank (June 17, 1989). He was one of 26 prisoners released in August 2013 when Israel gave in to the PA’s condition that without their release they would not return to negotiations.
PA Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs and Prisoners’ Club not getting enough from PA due to budget shortages 
Source: WAFA news agency, Aug. 15, 2013
     “The [PA] Ministry of Finance confirmed that the salaries of lawyers who work for the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs or the Prisoners’ Club will be paid in the coming days. The Director of the Ministry’s Communications and Public Relations Department, Rami Mahdawi, told WAFA today, Thursday, that the salaries of all lawyers who work for the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs or the Prisoners’ Club will be paid in the coming days…
He added that the lawyers now number 63; 36 are in the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, and 27 in the Prisoners’ Club. Their average monthly salary amounts to 11,000 shekels.”
PA will give released terrorists military ranks and respectable salaries 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Aug. 13, 2013
Official PA TV interviewed public relations director for the Gaza-based Association of Prisoners and Released Prisoners (Husam), Muwaffaq Hmeid:
    
“I believe that in the ‘Loyalty for the Free’ deal (i.e., the Shalit exchange deal) in which they [the prisoners] were released, [PA] President Abbas published a decision stating that they would be awarded military ranks according to their seniority in the Israeli prisons and a respectable salary allowing every prisoner who has been released from the Israeli prisons to live with dignity. In the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs there is a center for rehabilitating and integrating prisoners [back] into society so that they will contribute to this society and be a contributing element in building this society. Every prisoner from among these prisoners who will be released will be guaranteed a salary that will completely provide for his [needs in] life. They will receive military ranks.
I believe that anyone who will be released in this agreement (i.e., Israel’s release of 104 terrorists, starting at the outset of peace talks in August 2013) has been [imprisoned] for 20 years or more, and there are those among them who have been [imprisoned] for 27 years, and Karim Younes and Maher Younes who have been [imprisoned] for 32 years. Their military rank is somewhere between Amid (equivalent to Major General) and Liwaa (equivalent to Brigadier General), or something like that. I believe that this is, at the very least, what will be awarded to them by the Palestinian Presidency and by the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs in order to integrate them into Palestinian society and provide them with a salary (ratib) that will ensure them a dignified life.”

For descriptions of the terrorists and prisoner-exchange deals, click "full article."
Newspaper article announces that the PA paid salaries to Martyrs’ families 
Source: Al-Quds, Aug. 2, 2013
Headline: “Payment of salaries to Martyrs’ families”
     “Secretary-General of the National Association of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine, Muhammad Sbeihat said that the salaries of the Martyrs’ families were paid yesterday [Aug. 6, 2013] in the Bank of Palestine. Sbeihat added that the salaries should have been paid along with the workers’ salaries, however, due to a technical failure in the Ministry of Finance the payment was postponed to yesterday.”
PA to supplement salaries for families of Martyrs during month of Ramadan  
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 16, 2013
Headline: “A supplement to the salaries (rawatib) of 216 Martyrs’ families will be paid today [July 16, 2013]”
     “The National Union of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine said that the [PA] Ministry of Finance will pay a special salary (ratib) supplement to the Martyrs’ (Shahids’) families who did not receive the payment last June [2013]. Secretary-General of The National Association [of the Families of the Martyrs of Palestine], Muhammad Sbeihat, said that the Ministry of Finance will pay a [salary] supplement to 216 families of Martyrs who are classified as “civilian Shahids” and who did not receive last month’s allowance (Mukhassas). He explained that... these salaries (rawatib) will be in the bank on Tuesday morning [July 16, 2013]. Similarly, he expressed his gratitude to the Director General of the Families of Martyrs and Wounded Support Foundation... for their efforts that made payment of these allowances (Mukhassas) possible, especially since we are in the month of Ramadan when all our people’s daily cost of living doubles. The National Union of the Families of the Martyrs had put heavy pressure to ensure that the payment of these allowances (Mukhassas) be made as a supplement to [this month’s salary], rather than being delayed until next month’s payment.”

Note: The fact that the payment was not made during the month when living expenses are especially high, demonstrates that the PA Ministry of Finance had preferred to make the additional salary payment in a later month and agreed to make the additional payment during Ramadan only as a result of the insistence of the National Union of the Families of the Martyrs. This seems to indicate that the payments in question are not intended by the PA as social welfare allowances.
Prisoners' Club may terminate activities due to lack of funds 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, July 13, 2013
Headline: “The Prisoners’ Club is in danger of terminating activities due to [delays in] salary and budget transfers”
     “Branch directors of the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club from all regions of the homeland have asked Prime Minister Dr. [Rami] Hamdallah to intervene and solve the problem of the transfer of the operating budget to the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, a transfer that has not been made these last few months.
Prisoners’ Club directors in the [West] Bank said that [the fact that] the operating budget was not transferred has worsened the financial situation in the institution. The situation has become awful: the telephones and electricity have been cut off; branch directors can no longer supply what is necessary for the institution to provide service to prisoners’ families and mothers. Employees have not received salaries these last three months. This, in addition to debts accumulated since Palestinian Prisoners Day events and since the activities in sympathy with hunger striking prisoners. The institution now faces the danger of [having to] stop fulfilling its duty to the prisoners’ cause.”
EU donated €18.9 million for PA salaries in April 2013 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 5, 2013
Headline: “EU provides € 18.9 million in aid for [PA] salaries and pensions”
     “The European Union announced yesterday [July 4, 2013] that is has contributed close to €18.9 million to pay salaries and pensions for the month of April (sic. Original EU announcement said June) to approximately 75,000 government employees and pensioners from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. A press release issued by the EU said that this contribution… is funded by the European Commission (approximately €13.2 million), the Government of Sweden (40 million Swedish Kronor [equaling] approximately €4.6 million) and the Government of Holland (approximately €1.1 million, earmarked specifically for salaries of PA [employees] in the justice sector).”
Released prisoner self-immolates to protest against the PA for denying him a salary 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 1, 2013
Headline: “Released prisoner sets himself on fire in front of the Ministry of Finance in El-Bireh to demand a monthly allowance”
     “Yesterday [June 30, 2013] a 21 year-old man set himself on fire in front of the Ministry of Finance offices in the city of El-Bireh in a suicide attempt to protest the fact that the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs does not allot him a monthly salary.
The young man, Wisam Bilal Khalil Ma’aruf, from the Tulkarem District, set fire to himself yesterday morning in front of passersby after immersing himself in a flammable substance; however security guards saved his life…
Ma’aruf is demanding that the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs allot him a monthly salary. Any person who was imprisoned for over five consecutive years is entitled to this allowance.”
Hamas and Islamic Jihad prisoners ‎complain that PA only paid grants to PLO ‎prisoners 
Source: Al-Jazeera website, June 13, 2013
     ‎“Hamas and Islamic Jihad prisoners released as part of the prisoner exchange with Israel, which has been named ‘the Shalit deal’, are complaining of deductions from the salaries they receive from the Palestinian Authority… The PA has withheld payment of the Dignified Life Grant to Hamas and Jihad prisoners released into the Gaza Strip as part of the deal made in October 2011. [The grant is] $2,000 for every year spent in prison, but in Gaza it [the PA] has paid it to PLO-affiliated prisoners [exclusively]. The head of the Prisoners’ and Released [Prisoners’] Union, released prisoner Tawfiq Abu Na’im said that prisoners from Hamas and the Islamic Jihad released in the [Shalit] deal did not receive the same treatment [as did] prisoners from the PLO released as part of the same deal… He told Al-Jazeera.net that the PA made deductions from salaries paid to Hamas and Jihad prisoners in Gaza with no prior warning and with no justification, and also unfairly suspended salaries of other [released prisoners] from the two organizations..‎.."

Note: In October 2011, the Israeli ‎government agreed to release 1,027 ‎Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prison in ‎exchange for Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, ‎who had been held hostage by Hamas for ‎more than 5 years.‎
Another form of PA support for prisoners: PA helped pay prisoners’ fines  
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 11, 2013
     “This past June 1 [2013] the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs put into effect its decision to stop paying fines imposed by the occupation on the Palestinian prisoners. The explanation provided was that this increases the occupation state’s funds. Some believe this decision was made due to the financial crisis in the State of Palestine but serious discussions of the matter began in 2007…
The highest fines were in 2004, 2005 and 2006 and their total amount was over five million shekels per year. The Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs] paid the largest part while the prisoners’ families paid the remainder. In many cases, as part of his sentence, one prisoner‘s [fines] can amount to 15-20 thousand shekels. According to the Ministry’s estimates, the prisoners’ families have paid between 50%-60% of the fines’ total amount.
According to statistical data on the matter, the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs paid the fines as follows:
- In 2008 the Ministry paid the sum of 4 million shekels.
- In 2009 [the Ministry] paid 3,683,950 shekels for 1,731 fines. The remainder, over 3 million shekels, was paid by the prisoners’ families.
- In 2010 [the Ministry] paid 1,151,550 shekels for 479 fines and the prisoners’ families paid the remainder, over 3 million shekels.
- In 2011 [the Ministry] paid 1,863,250 shekels for 762 fines and the prisoners’ families paid over two million shekels.
- In 2012 the Ministry paid 2.5 million shekels.
- In 2013 the total sum of the fines amounted to over 13 million shekels. This includes traffic violations and [fines for] workers without permits who are arrested by Israel and brought before a court-martial in the Beitunia prison (i.e., Ofer prison) or the Salem court-martial.”

Note: Click "full article" below to view a longer excerpt of the article.
EU donates 19 million Euros towards PA salaries for May 2013 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 6, 2013
Headline: “The European Union contributes €19.2 million for [the PA’s] salaries and pensions for the month of May”
     “Yesterday [June 5, 2013], the European Union contributed approximately €19.2 million to pay [PA] salaries and pensions for the month of May to almost 75,000 Palestinian civil servants and pensioners in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
According to an announcement published by the EU, this contribution is channeled through the European Commission’s PEGASE mechanism which is funded by the European Commission (approximately €12.5 million) the Government of Denmark (€4.7 million) and the Government of Finland (€2 million.)”
Terror victim's father demands Norway take action against PA salaries to terrorists 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), May 14, 2013
NRK TV reporter Tormod Strand: "Israeli Arnold Roth is on his way to Parliament to tell a story of terror. His daughter Malki never made it past her 15th year because a Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up in this pizza restaurant in Jerusalem in 2001. The person responsible for making the bomb - Abdullah Barghouti - is now in Israeli prison. Palestine honors hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, including many terrorists, with a monthly salary... Arnold Roth is meeting politicians in Parliament who are interested in the prisoner issue. Norway, which gives large sums to Palestine, must demand an end to [the payment of] salaries for terror, says Malki's father."

Arnold Roth, father of terror victim: "At two o'clock on that afternoon, they were standing next to the counter placing their order, when a young man with a guitar case... walked in. The explosives in that guitar case were made by Abdullah Barghouti, who is the most highly paid recipient of Norwegian generosity in the Israeli prisons today."

NRK TV reporter Tormod Strand: "Several times in recent years, the Foreign Ministry has denied that Palestine pays salaries to terrorists. But NRK can now report that already in 2004, the Palestinian Finance Minister Salam Fayyad wrote an article in which he openly spoke about the program for salaries to terrorists, among others."

MP Peter Gitmar (Conservative party): "Fayyad is one of the most important Palestinian politicians, one of our main contacts, and it is hard to believe that the Norwegian Foreign Ministry has not caught this."
Click to view video
Released prisoner attempted self-‎immolation because he didn’t qualify for ‎a PA salary 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 13, 2013
Headline: “Released prisoner attempts ‎self-immolation in Gaza because the ‎‎‘permanently unemployed’ clause does ‎not apply to him”‎
     ‎“Director of prisoners’ affairs in the ‎Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, Bassam ‎Al-Majdalawi, confirmed to the ‎Prisoners’ Center for Studies (Al-Asra) ‎that released prisoner Ismail Shehadeh, ‎‎56, attempted self-immolation in the ‎Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs’] offices in ‎the Gaza Strip because the ‎‎‘permanently unemployed’ clause does ‎not apply to him as it does to other ‎released prisoners who served a similar ‎prison term. Majdalawi told the ‎Prisoners’ Center for Studies that the ‎Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs’] office in ‎Gaza submitted his file several times, ‎and the Ministry and Finance Ministry ‎dealt with the issue, and that it is still ‎being processed.”‎

Note: According to the independent Al-‎Bayader newspaper:‎ “The PA Ministry of Prisoners’ and ‎Released Prisoners’ Affairs via the ‎Finance Ministry, pays a monthly salary, ‎under the ‘permanently unemployed’ ‎clause, to released prisoners who spent ‎over five years in the Israeli occupation ‎prisons, consecutively or inconsecutively ‎and to unemployed people in the public ‎sector (civilian or military) so as to ‎enable them to provide for themselves ‎and lead a life of dignity.”‎
PA daily: Average salaries for male and female Palestinian workers 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 5, 2013
Article by Bashar Daraghmeh:
     “Secretary-General of the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions Shaher Saed said that workers are suffering a great injustice, in particular when it comes to [the fact that] the law of minimum wage is not being implemented…
Saed explained that despite the law of minimum wage having been approved, and despite all the reservations about it, it is not being implemented in the way it had been authorized. He called for staunch legislation that will obligate employers, so that the law will be enforced and so that there will be supervision of this issue…
A study prepared by the Arab World for Research & Development (AWRAD), found that…27% of workers work for less than 750 shekels per month, 32% make between 750-1,500 shekels, approximately 20% make between 1,500-2,500 shekels per month and the rest (20%) make more than 2,500 shekels. The lowest salaries are in the Gaza Strip and the highest in Jerusalem. The average salary for women in the workforce is 1,000 shekels, in other words, less than half the salary of male workers, which is 2,040 shekels.”

Note: Apparently the data refers to the private sector and does not include PA workers because the item refers to workers and laborers, not to civil servants and clerks. The average monthly salary the PA pays to its civil servants is 2,882 shekels (approx. $790).
PMW reports prompt question in Danish parliament about PA salaries for terrorists and Danish funding 
Source: Danish Parliament, Apr. 24, 2013
Danish Parliament, question by MP Søren Espersen to Foreign Minister Villy Søvndal:
MP Søren Espersen: "The idea was really to get some control over the money we (Denmark) send [to the PA]... This is happening on a large scale in Norway at the moment. [They] are preparing a hearing on what the money from Norway [to the PA] is actually spent on. Is it, for example, as rumors have said on Norwegian TV, spent on [salary] payments for convicted terrorists [imprisoned] for life and their relatives, who are living good lives because one of their relatives has carried out a terrorist attack? Norway has started [investigating this], the UK has started and [they] are asking: What's going on? What I want the [Foreign] Minister to do, is to say: 'It matters to us very much that every coin we send for one purpose or another should be thoroughly checked. What is it spent on? Is this what we want?' This is what I ask of the Minister, especially in cases that have to do with rewarding jihadists and terrorists who detonate bombs among civilians. What will the Foreign Minister do to ensure us that our money is spent on its intended purpose, and not on terrorists?"
Foreign Minister Villy Søvndal: "We continuously monitor the money we send [to the PA] to make sure it ends up precisely at the humanitarian causes, we support: Among other things, the purpose of ensuring the payment of salaries to employees, ensuring that senior citizens receive their pensions, and ensuring that there is a security structure in Palestine or the West Bank, which, in the long run and also in the here and now, [will] mean security for Israel..."
Click to view video
Ramallah governor glorifies Palestinian prisoners as the “living examples of human dignity” and “the PA’s top priority” 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 22, 2013
      “District Governor of Ramallah and El-Bireh Laila Ghannam emphasized that the prisoner issue is the PA’s top priority, since it is always at the heart of the Palestinian cause, especially in light of the occupation authorities’ recurring daily violations against the prisoners.  During her participation in an appreciation [ceremony] for prisoners’ families in the Qalandiya refugee camp, which was organized by Fatah, Ghannam noted…that through their resolve and self-sacrifice, the Palestinian prisoners have become living examples of human dignity, considering the policy of silence adopted by the world’s nations in face of the tragic situation and the policy of torture, abuse and humiliation adopted against the living and the dead in the darkness of the prisons… Ghannam praised the prisoners’ mothers for their resolve, for refusing to be anything other than the ‘Al-Khansas’ of Palestine, for having suffered oppression and hardship while visiting their sons [in prison] and for having tasted the bitter taste of separation from their loved ones.”

Note: There are 6,500 Palestinians serving time in Israeli prisons (as of December 2014), all of whom were imprisoned for security offenses and terror related crimes. According to the PA Prisoner's Law, the word "prisoner" is defined as "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)

Al-Khansa - an Arab woman and poet from the earliest period of Islam (7th century) famous and honored in Islamic tradition for sending her four sons to battle and rejoiced when they all died as Martyrs. She has been lauded by the PA and often presented as a role model for mothers.

Report by PA Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs reveals there are 4,900 Palestinian prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 16, 2013
     “The Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs published a comprehensive report on the prisoners’ situation… Palestinian Prisoners’ Day occurs on April 17 while approximately 4,900 prisoners and detainees still remain in prison… Among them are 235 children and 14 women. Female prisoner Lina Al-Jarbouni from the lands occupied in 1948 (i.e., Israel) who has been in prison since April 18, 2002 is the most veteran female prisoner…
In addition, according to the Ministry’s data there are 533 prisoners serving life sentences.”
Possible hearing in Norway regarding Foreign Ministry misinforming Parliament about PA salaries for terrorist prisoners 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), Apr. 10, 2013
Reporter Tormod Strand: “...4,600 Palestinian prisoners are [imprisoned] in Israeli prisons, convicted of security offenses. 500 of them are [serving] lifetime [sentences] for terror-related acts.”
Reporter Tormod Strand: “[NRK] Evening News has reported that these prisoners, who are being praised on PA TV, receive great financial benefits from the PA for the battle they have fought for Palestine. February 15, [2013]: The Foreign Ministry at first denied that such a [support] program [for prisoners] existed. March 21, [2013]: After checking with Palestine, the Foreign Ministry confirmed that it may be true that such a program exists. Now the Foreign Ministry calls for more detailed answers from Palestine. Yesterday, the Foreign Ministry sent another letter to Parliament to clarify. [But] the Høyre Party (Right) does not trust the answers they get from the Foreign Ministry.”
Reporter Tormod Strand: “Is it credible that the Foreign Ministry has not known about this?”
MP Peter Gitmark, (the Høyre Party): “No, it isn’t...” [...]
MP Anders Anundsen (Progress Party): “I think we are one step closer to a hearing, simply because we are not getting an answer [that is] specific enough to the questions we are asking. And it is difficult to understand that the Foreign Ministry has not been familiar with this program before.”
Click to view video
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PA Deputy Minister vows to keep paying prisoners' salaries, even if Norway and Britain stop their aid 
Source: Hona Al-Quds site, Apr. 8, 2013
Article by Omar Abu Arqoub:
Headline: “Israel is fighting against the prisoners’ issue.”
     “Deputy Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Ziyad Abu Ein told Hona Al-Quds (internet news site): ‘If the financial assistance and support to the PA are stopped, the [payment] of salaries (Rawatib) and allowances (Mukhassasat) to Palestinian prisoners will not be stopped, whatever the cost may be. The prisoners are our joy. We will sacrifice everything for them and continue to provide for their families.’
Abu Ein added: ‘Israel supports and finances comprehensive activity in Europe; to be precise, in England, Norway and Belgium, for stopping the financial support and assistance to the PA and for fighting against the issue of the prisoners, who [Israel] describes as terrorists and suicide [bombers]. This is a kind of incitement and even more so, it is an attempt to inflame world opinion against the Palestinians.’
Abu Ein said that the European governments turned to them about this issue. He added that the Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs] explained its official position and opinion, that these funds are transferred to the prisoners’ families, from whom the occupation has taken their head and provider and who are considered to be in need of welfare assistance. He noted that there is an understanding of the issue.”
Click to view bulletin
PA government sets minimum wage at 1,450 shekels a month 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, Apr. 8, 2013
     “The implementation of the minimum wage [of 1,450 shekels a month] took effect as of January 1 this year [2013]… The agreed upon proposal was presented to the government at its meeting on Tuesday Oct. 9, 2012, and has been approved [by the government].”
Israeli TV interviews PMW about PA salaries to terrorists 
Source: Israeli TV Channel 2, Apr. 5, 2013
TV hosts: “We’ll continue discussing foreign affairs with Itamar Marcus who I'm already awarding a small Israel Prize, or maybe a big one. Do you have one here? - I do, just a second. Norway has discovered that funds it gave to the PA are given to security prisoners. This information was brought to Norway's attention by PMW. Here is Itamar Marcus, director of PMW, good morning… You’ve been trying for years to bring this information to the world’s attention. How did you suddenly succeed?”
PMW director, Itamar Marcus: “Two years ago we published that funds are going to monthly salaries for Palestinian terrorist prisoners. If the prisoner is senior enough and has spent enough time in prison these salaries can reach 12,000 shekels per month.”
TV host: “Meaning, the Norwegians are paying the salaries of serial killers, people who committed horrifying crimes - at the taxpayer’s expense.”
PMW director, Itamar Marcus: “And not just the Norwegians, the EU, all European countries, the US as well. Anyone contributing to the PA’s general budget is also funding security prisoners, including terrorists who committed murder...”
Click to view video

Note: For the entire transcript of the interview, click "full article" below.
PA Minister of Prisoners Affairs: PA will no longer pay prisoners’ fines to Israel 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 3, 2013
Headline: “Karake: We have decided to stop paying the occupation’s fines and to reassess the canteen agreement”
     “Minister for Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake said that the Ministry for Prisoners’ Affairs has decided to stop paying monetary fines imposed by Israeli military courts on most prisoners, and to reassess the discriminatory canteen agreement…
Karake said: ‘This money, that military courts order to be paid, is used to finance the occupation’s administrative and military organizations. It is not repaid and it constitutes a severe economic burden on the citizens, on the family and on the PA.’
He said that imposing fines has become systematic and [a regular] part of Israeli legal policy. He added that collecting money like this from the Palestinian people is illegal, and noted that fines are imposed on 90% of the prisoners who are tried.”
Norwegian Foreign Minister admits PA has special support program for prisoners 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), Mar. 21, 2013
Newsreader: "Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide is now involving himself in the issue of the Palestinians who are convicted of terrorism and who also receive large sums of money from the PA. Every year, Norway gives a lot of money to the PA and according to Foreign Minister Eide, the [Norwegian] government was misinformed [by the PA] about this issue."
NRK TV reporter Tormod Strand: "Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide is now trying to clarify the issue... - the PA's financial support of Palestinian prisoners convicted of terror..."
Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide: "I certainly have not had documented that it (the money) doesn't go to people who have been convicted of terror, and information has been given that those who are [imprisoned] for many years receive more money than those [imprisoned for] less. That is precisely why we, along with the UK, have asked [the PA] for even more detailed information..."
NRK TV reporter Tormod Strand: "NRK [TV]'s reports (on PMW findings) made the Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs look into the matter..."
MP Anders Anundsen, Head of Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs: "...We still don't have complete clarification about when the Foreign Ministry became aware that this program (i.e., the PA's program of payments to prisoners including terrorists) was different than what they had previously informed Parliament..."
Click to view video
Click to view bulletin
Norway's Foreign Ministry admits it had false information about the PA's use of aid to fund terrorist prisoners 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), Mar. 12, 2013
NRK TV newsreader: "The [Norwegian] Foreign Ministry now admits that [Norwegian] Parliament received imprecise information [from the Foreign Ministry] regarding financial support to Palestinian prisoners. Today the Parliamentary Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs demanded a better and more thorough answer from the Foreign Ministry."

NRK TV narrator: "...[Ibrahim Hamed] is one of the approximately 4,600 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, who, according to... Palestinian Media Watch, receive salaries from the PA while they are in prison. Hamed was behind a bomb that killed nine civilians in Jerusalem in 2002. Norway is one of the major financial contributors to Palestine... The Norwegian Foreign Ministry has repeatedly denied that salaries are given to terrorists, but following [NRK TV's] Evening News' reports the Parliamentary Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs has brought up the matter with the Foreign Ministry... The Foreign Ministry admits that: 'It is unfortunate that the information that was first communicated to [Norwegian] Parliament, and which was based on information obtained from the PA at the time, in retrospect, is imprecise.'"

[Member of the Parliamentary Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs] Per-Kristian Foss: "It is striking that it takes an NRK [TV]-investigation and questions from Parliament before they (the Foreign Ministry) discover that the money has been used in a different way than what [the PA] has been reporting. Apparently, the Foreign Ministry is on thin ice. Therefore [the ministry] is asking for time to investigate further..."
Click to view video
Norwegian MP says government "indirectly" funds terrorism by funding PA salaries 
Source: NRK TV (Norway), Feb. 28, 2013
NRK TV newsreader: "Convicted Palestinian terrorists in Israeli prisons receive salaries from their government, an Israeli organization [PMW] claims. Norway provides substantial financial aid to the PA and the Foreign Ministry confirms that there is a financial aid program for prisoners, including terrorists..."
NRK TV newsreader: "[MP] Peter Gitmark (Conservative Party), how seriously do you view this?"
MP Peter Gitmark: "This is very serious and especially the fact that it almost seems to be an aid program to terror-convicted prisoners in Israel, not to mention that it increases according to the length of the sentence."
NRK TV newsreader: "But is it not fair that people receive support to provide for the family if its breadwinner is imprisoned?"
MP Peter Gitmark: "Yes, absolutely, and canteen money and also simple payments to the family is okay, but having large amounts like 18,000 [Norwegian] kroner a month [paid], whether it is for the family or the individual prisoner, because he has committed a terrorist act, is unacceptable."
NRK TV newsreader: "Do you think that Norwegian tax money is being used to fund terrorism?"
MP Peter Gitmark: "Yes, this is an indirect form of that. However, it is also important to emphasize that the Norwegian support to the Palestinian areas is vital in order to create an opportunity to reach a two-state solution, and that is what is needed for peace."
Click to view video
Click to view bulletin
Norway donates $43 million in aid for PA salaries 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 24, 2013
Headline: “Norway extends emergency aid to the PA”
     "The Norwegian government decided yesterday [Feb. 23, 2013] to rush and send emergency aid to the PA to pay salaries to the employees in the public sector. This is within the framework of aid granted to finance the important services that the Palestinian people needs in the education-, medical care- and security-sectors.
Norwegian Foreign Minister, Espen Barth Eide said that Palestine cannot continue to rely on those donors forever. He noted that the stability of the Palestinian economy will not be ensured in the absence of progress in the political negotiations, in a way that will make the end of the Israeli occupation possible and enable the Palestinians to again control their resources.
He said that the current financial distress requires all parties involved to grant more funds in 2013, and called on all donors to hurry and transfer aid to the Palestinian budget as soon as possible.
Barth Eide said that Norwegian aid to the Palestinian budget, which comes to US $43 million, will be transferred through the World Bank, to help build the public institutions of the State of Palestine.”
Click to view bulletin

Note: PMW has documented that thousands of terrorists imprisoned in Israel are among the recipients of PA salaries. Aid money given to the PA for salaries and for the PA general budget pays the salaries of these imprisoned terrorists. To view PMW's report on this, click here.
Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs: The number of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails rose to 4,750 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Feb. 2, 2013
Headline: “Farawneh: 4,750 prisoners in the occupation’s prisons, 198 children and 12 women”
     “Head of the Statistics Department in the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, Abd Al-Nasser Farawneh, said that the number of [Palestinian] prisoners and detainees held by the occupation authorities in their prisons rose to 4,750 at the end of January [2013]… He noted that there are 532 prisoners who are sentenced to one or more life sentences…”
PA pays 5 million shekels per month to 4,000 released prisoners 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Jan. 28, 2013
PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake: 
     "Every Palestinian prisoner who serves 5 years or more [in prison] receives what is called a partial salary or a partial allowance. It starts at 900 shekels and 100 shekels are added for each additional year in prison... If the prisoner does not work in the PA he receives this salary. A female prisoner [receives this] if she served 3 years, not 5, because female prisoners have special circumstances. This is permanent. Each month, approximately 5 million shekels are paid to around 4,000 released prisoners who receive this salary each month."
Click to view video
Prisoner not eligible for PA salary after his release complains 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Jan. 26, 2013
Muhammad Sabbah is one of a number of former prisoners who began a hunger strike protesting the fact that the Palestinian Authority does not pay the same salary to prisoners who have been imprisoned less than five years as is paid to prisoners who have been imprisoned for more than five years.
Muhammad Sabbah: “After our release they (i.e., the PA) gave us medical insurance for one year only. They didn’t do any kind of extensive medical examination on us when we got out of jail… Financially, they gave us unemployment compensation for six months. After six months, they stop our salaries… [Someone imprisoned] from three months to three years, they give him 1,400 [shekels]. From three years up to five years, they give him 2,000. But after six months that’s it! They stop his salary. Of course, there’s the presidential grant. The presidential grant! There are guys whose cases were in 2008-2009 who still haven’t been paid. And they’re still demanding it.”
Prisoners protest against the PA for not getting full benefits 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 25, 2013
     “From a tent they set up opposite the offices of the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, eight released prisoners from the town of Tulkarem announced that they are beginning a hunger strike for an unlimited [period of time] to protest the fact that their demands are being ignored by the [PA] Ministry and other responsible bodies.
Released prisoner Muhammad Sabah told Al-Hayat Al-Jadida that they have taken this step because the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs has ignored their demands. He noted that they were in prison for less than five years, and that they are being deprived of the minimal rights received by prisoners who were incarcerated for five years or more. He went on to say, ‘On the twentieth of this month there was a sit-down strike opposite the building of the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, in order to demand justice. And a number of days later no one had yet related to our demands, even though the Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Issa Karake, came and listened to our demands, without reacting to them.’ He stressed that: ‘We’ve begun this hunger strike, now in its second day, with eight released prisoners participating, [and will continue] until our key demands are met, first and foremost that we not be denied the benefits enjoyed by prisoners who were in prison for more than five years. They give a salary for only six months to prisoners who were in prison for less than five years, and health insurance for only one year.’ He stressed that many of the released prisoners suffer from chronic diseases and mental illnesses, and need extended treatment.”
Ex-prisoners demand salaries from the PA 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Jan. 25, 2013
Headline: “Eight prisoners are on a hunger strike to protest their demands being ignored”
     “From a tent they set up opposite the offices of the [PA] Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, eight released prisoners from the town of Tulkarem announced that they are beginning a hunger strike for an unlimited [period of time] to protest the fact that their demands are being ignored by the ministry and other responsible bodies.
Released prisoner Muhammad Sabah told Al-Hayat Al-Jadida that they have taken this step because the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs has ignored their demands. He noted that they were in prison for less than five years, and that they are being deprived of the minimal rights received by prisoners who were incarcerated for five years or more (i.e., receiving salaries). He went on to say: ‘On the twentieth of this month there was a sit-down strike opposite the building of the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs, in order to demand justice. And a number of days later no one had yet related to our demands, even though the Minister for Prisoners’ Affairs, Issa Karake, came and listened to our demands, without reacting to them.” He [Sabah] stressed that: “We’ve begun this hunger strike, now in its second day, with eight released prisoners participating, [and we will continue] until our key demands are met, first and foremost that we not be denied the benefits granted to prisoners who were in prison for more than five years. They (i.e., the PA) give a salary for only six months to prisoners who were in prison for less than five years, and health insurance for only a year.” He stressed that many of the released prisoners suffer from chronic diseases and mental illnesses, and need extended treatment.”
Chairman of the Prisoners' club: Prisoners receive salaries "exactly... [like] me and you" 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Jan. 17, 2013
PA TV interviews Chairman of the Prisoners’ Club Qadura Fares who confirms that prisoners receive salaries like civil servants:
PA TV host: “How were the prisoners' salaries and allowances affected by the economic crisis in Palestine?”
Chairman of the Prisoners’ Club, Qadura Fares: “All in all, we are in the same situation as others. What is spent on the prisoners is exactly what is spent on me and you. These are salaries. Therefore, when the salaries are paid to those working in [government] ministries and institutions, they will also be paid to the prisoners.”
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Abbas anounces decision to amend "Prisoners Law"  
Source: WAFA, official PA news agency, Jan. 8, 2013
Headline: “The President [Abbas] published a legally-binding decision to amend the ‘Prisoners Law’”
    “Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, announced today a legally-binding decision to amend the ‘Prisoners Law’. Presidential Legal Advisor Hassan Al-Ouri said that the aim of the amendment is to improve conditions of prisoners detained in Israeli occupation prisons, to reinforce their resolve, and to ease the suffering of their families.”
PA Minister: Terrorist prisoners continue to receive salaries after being released from prison 
Source: Wattan TV (Palestinian private channel), Dec. 29, 2012
Palestinian terrorist prisoners who served more than 5 years in prison continue to get salaries after being released from prison. TV interview with PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs, Issa Karake:
TV host: "You speak of a permanent salary for every [released] prisoner who was in prison for more than five years, and he gets his salary while he sits at home. Some of them are in the prime of their lives and could get a job and work. Why not use him in the workforce and give him a salary?"
Minister Karake: "That's right. I presented it to the government and we decided to give preference to employ these prisoners... in order to make the prisoner into a productive person..."
Host: "Do we have the number of prisoners who get full monthly salaries?"
Karake: "About 4,000."
Host: "That's an army."
Karake: "Yes, that's a big number, and it's growing."
Host: "They don't work. They just collect a salary."
Karake: "Some work."
Host: "A small number."
Karake: "Some volunteer and work in different institutions."
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PA Minister: Prisoners get salaries, not welfare, "out of esteem for their sacrifice and struggle" 
Source: WAFA news agency, Dec. 27, 2012
PMW released two reports in 2012 documenting that foreign aid to the PA pays salaries for thousands of terrorist prisoners. In response, the Norwegian and British governments defended their continued aid to the PA, stating that the PA does not pay "salaries" to terrorists in Israeli prisons, but social "assistance" payments to the prisoners' families. The following statement by PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake in WAFA, the official PA news service, directly contradicts this claim:
Headline: "Karake denies rumors about changing salaries into social welfare."
     "Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake denied the stories and rumors that the [Palestinian] prisoners' (i.e., in Israeli prisons for terror related crimes) salaries would be changed to social welfare payments.
In a press release Karake clarified that prisoners receive their stipends in accordance with regulations and the law, and their rights are protected so that it is impossible to hurt them. He noted that the government headed by Salam Fayyad considers the prisoners' cause central, and has authorized regulations to support and protect them out of esteem for their sacrifice and struggle.
He added that recent years have seen strong government support for regulations and laws that protect the rights of prisoners and their families, as [they protect] the rights of Martyred fighters.
Karake said that people should be careful regarding rumors, and not use the prisoners to promote narrow, personal aims, which caused confusion among the prisoners."
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Prisoners' Club Chairman: Payments made to prisoners are "salaries," not "assistance" 
Source: Al-Quds website, Dec. 27, 2012
After international donors questioned the PA about its payment of salaries to terrorist prisoners, the PA changed the language of the law from "salaries" to "assistance" to appease donors. According to the following article, after organizations representing the Palestinian prisoners complained about this change, the PA changed the term back to "salaries":
Headline: "Fares: The government has given the 'Prisoners and Released Prisoners Law' final approval."
     "Prisoners' Club Chairman Qadura Fares said that the government has given final approval for what is stipulated in the Prisoners' and Released [Prisoners'] Law of 2004, which considers payments made to prisoners 'salaries,' (Arabic: ratib) to which no other term applies.
In a statement made to the media, Fares on Thursday [Dec. 27, 2012] called for an end to the disagreement in this matter, which was settled in accordance with the law passed by the previous (PA) Parliament in 2004. The Ahrar Center for Prisoners' and Human Rights Research had demanded that President Mahmoud Abbas intervene immediately to reverse the government's decision to replace the term 'prisoner salary' (Arabic: ratib) with the term 'prisoner assistance (Arabic: i’anat).
The Ahrar Center had noted that Palestinian laws are explicit, and what a prisoner receives is not ‘assistance’ (Arabic: ma’una, from the same root as i’anat), but rather his minimal rights for the years he spent in prison."
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PA law allows prisoners to give their salaries to whoever they choose 
Source: PA Ministry of Information website, Oct. 30, 2012
PA regulation 18, 2010 from the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs:
     “Paragraph 1: Authorized agent: The person who is authorized to receive the salary in place of the prisoner.”
“Paragraph 5:
1. If the prisoner is married, his wife will be his authorized agent, unless the prisoner appoints someone else instead of her.
2. If the prisoner is not married, one of his parents will be the authorized agent. The prisoner determines which one of them or any other person [will be the authorized agent], if there is an argument about it.
3. Authorization of an agent is done by an authorization of agent [form] issued by the Red Cross, that is signed by the prisoner, or by a special authorization of agent [form] signed by him and approved by a lawyer of the Ministry [of Prisoners’ Affairs] and by the General Administration for Legal Matters of the Ministry. It will be valid for use by the Ministry only for the purpose of the salary.”
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Note: This PA regulation can be accessed at http://freedom.ps/attachments/25-5-2011/02.pdf
Minimum wage in the PA set at 1,450 shekels a month 
Source: WAFA news agency, Oct. 9, 2012
     “The [PA] government has approved the recommendations of the Wages Committee to set the minimum wage in Palestine at 1,450 shekels a month, [and] the minimum wage for a day’s work as well as for people working one day not on a regular basis and the temporarily employed – at 65 shekels, and the minimum wage for one hour’s work at 8.5 shekels…”
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Note: According to Palestinian Authority law, prisoners serving more than 10 years receive a monthly salary from the PA of 6,000 shekels, (approx. $1,700), which is more than double the average monthly salary the PA pays to its civil servants of 2,882 shekels (approx. $790), or more than four times the minimum wage in the PA of 1,450 shekels (approx. $400).
PA daily: 4,660 Palestinians are in Israeli prisons 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 22, 2012
     "The number of men and women prisoners in the occupation's prisons totals 4,660 people held in 17 prisons inside Israel. This includes 3,822 prisoners from the West Bank, 449 prisoners from Gaza, 152 prisoners from Jerusalem, and 206 from the Palestine territories occupied in 1948."
PA Ministry of Prisoners Affairs: Each prisoner to receive a clothing allowance in addition to their salary 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 11, 2012
Headline: "Karake: 400 shekels paid to prisoners, and canteen allowance to be increased"
     "Minister of Prisoners' Affairs, Issa Karake, said that the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs had paid every prisoner 400 shekels, in addition to his salary (Arabic: ratib), as clothing expenses. He added yesterday, in a press release, that [his ministry] is working to increase [the prisoners'] canteen allowance (Arabic: mukhassas) for the month of Ramadan, and noted that the financial grant for released prisoners who had served long sentences will be regulated by law and in accordance with available financial resources.
He thanked the President [Abbas] and the Prime Minister [Fayyad] for their constant interest in providing a dignified and worthy life for every male and female prisoner released from the occupation's prisons. Karake noted that the Palestinian Authority is in unfortunate financial straits, and therefore this grant will be regulated according to a table to be approved by the government and fair criteria to be set by the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs. [Karake added that] this would become a regular service, along with the other services provided by the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs."
PA Minister: The PA gives monthly salaries and canteen money to prisoners (including terrorists) 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, July 8, 2012
Headline: “[PA Minister of Prisoners' Affairs, Issa Karake] emphasized that the PA is one of the major employers of released prisoners – Karake calls upon the private sector and civil institutions to cooperate in employing released prisoners”
     “Karake said that the [Palestinian] government pays salaries to the prisoners in prison, in an amount averaging 17,500,000 shekels (approximately US$ 4,730,000) per month, as well as millions of shekels in canteen money each month, for prisoners in prison.
Karake stated that the government offers release grants to released prisoners in an amount exceeding 5 million shekels (approximately US $1,350,000) annually.”
Norwegian FM dismisses PMW ‎documentation about PA salaries for ‎prisoners 
Source: Regjeringen.no (Norwegian Parliament’s ‎website)‎, June 5, 2012
Following PMW’s exposure of the PA ‎policy of paying salaries to imprisoned ‎terrorists, the Norwegian Foreign Minister ‎dismissed the concern about how the PA ‎uses Norwegian aid. ‎
Answer in Parliament by Norwegian ‎Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre:

     ‎“I condemn all forms of hate propaganda ‎and incitement to terrorism, no matter on ‎which side of the conflict the parties ‎reside. Such attitudes and actions are not ‎consistent with Norwegian foreign policy ‎interests and message, and we do our ‎utmost to ensure that Norwegian ‎supported projects do not contribute to ‎spreading such attitudes. We achieve ‎this through quality assurance and close ‎follow up on our partners and their work. Questions about hate propaganda and ‎incitement to violence is an issue that we ‎regularly bring up in our dialogue with ‎‎[our] Palestinian and international ‎partners. We feel this is something that is ‎being taken seriously also by the ‎Palestinian authorities.”‎
Prisoner on PA salary cuts: Prisoners who killed Jews are entitled to a salary, also after release 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Mar. 29, 2012
PA TV program addresses the uncertain future facing the Palestinians. Viewers call in and complain about the inefficiency of PA government offices.
PA TV host: "With us is Iyad Abu Khaizaran. Good evening." …
Iyad Abu Khaizaran: "Hi. Firstly, I would like to convey greetings to our prisoners, all of them. All our dear ones in the prisons. From the time of our father, Ahmad Sa'adat… To all the brothers, the friends, in all the prisons. But what I want to say is: since the day we were released from prison, when our reception was over, [Abbas] has given us half a salary. That's because we're all fighters. We killed Jews. I personally killed Jews. I killed settlers and I injured soldiers. My house was destroyed. I have 11 bullets in my body. I served 22 years in Israeli prisons..."
Host: "Did you, like the other [prisoners], receive salaries in the prisons?"
Iyad Abu Khaizaran: "Yes. Since around the year 2000, [the salaries] became organized."
Host: "In other words, from 2000, did all the organizations, without exception, whether it was Fatah or Hamas, supporters of Abbas or not supporters of Abbas, receive salaries or not? Tell the truth openly."
Iyad Abu Khaizaran: "Yes, yes they did."
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Note: Iyad Abu Khaizaran was released as part of the Shalit prisoner release exchange deal in 2011. Abu Khaizaran, member of the Islamic Jihad, was given a life sentence in 1991 for stabbing a 76 year-old man to death, Shlomo Yahya, in a suburb of Tel Aviv.
Prisoner on PA salary cuts: Prisoners who killed Jews are entitled to a PA salary, also after release 
Source: Official Palestinian Authority TV, Mar. 29, 2012

PA TV host:
"With us is Iyad Abu Khaizaran. Good evening."
Iyad Abu Khaizaran: "Since the day we were released from prison, we have been given [only] half a salary... We killed Jews. I personally killed Jews. I killed settlers and I injured soldiers. My house was destroyed. I have 11 bullets in my body. I served 22 years in Israeli prisons."
Host: "Did you, like the other [prisoners], receive salaries in the prisons?"
Abu Khaizaran: "Yes. Since around the year 2000, [the salaries] became organized."
Host: "In other words, from 2000, did all the organizations, without exception, whether it was Fatah or Hamas, supporters of Abbas or not supporters of Abbas, receive salaries or not? Tell the truth openly."
Abu Khaizaran: "Yes, yes they did."
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Note: Iyad Abu Khaizaran, member of the Islamic Jihad, was given a life sentence in 1991 for stabbing a 76 year-old man to death, Shlomo Yahya, in a suburb of Tel Aviv.
Norwegian Foreign Ministry rejects PMW documentation: PA salaries for prisoners are social benefits 
Source: Dagbladet.no (Norway), Sept. 4, 2011
     "[Norwegian daily] Dagbladet has asked the government a number of questions regarding Pal Watch’s (PMW’s) information [on PA paying salaries to imprisoned terrorists], but the [Norwegian] Foreign Ministry denies these problems and refers to the salary payments as social benefits.
‘The PA has, in the same way other countries’ governments have, a variety of programs for social transfers to its citizens, including people who are imprisoned. Social benefits to the families of Palestinians in Israeli prisons are part of the total Palestinian social security system and are intended to compensate for loss of income. Such social transfers have been made for as long as the PA has existed and [are made on] social grounds, including considerations for children in the family,’ writes Frode Overland Andersen in the Foreign Ministry in an email.
That the prisoners receive a higher average salary than teachers, soldiers and others performing key functions in a future Palestinian state, was not commented on by the Foreign Ministry.
the Foreign Ministry does not believe that a new law has been adopted [by the PA as reported by PMW]:
‘The PA states that it has not adopted new legislation of importance regarding this type of welfare programs recently. There is however a bill from the prison inmates’ support group, which has not been adopted and which probably will not be addressed in the near future either,’ Overland Andersen continues.
‘Norway has continuous contact with the PA and other donors to ensure that our aid to the Palestinian Authority is used in accordance with the conditions.’"
PA daily publishes PA salaries to terrorist prisoners from the May 2011 general budget 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011
     "An official document, a copy of which reached Life and the Market (supplement to the official PA daily), reveals that the cost of salaries [in the PA budget] is much higher than people think... The sum of monthly salaries for May 2011 totaled 727,287,824 shekels ($214,412,683.96 USD), paid from the treasury of the [Palestinian] National Authority. The document shows that the largest portion of the salaries’ expense - more than 40% - was paid to civil servants... As for the prisoners, they receive approximately 2.5% of the cost of salaries [for May], in the form of salaries and [additional] payments, totaling 17,678,247 shekels ($5,211,747)... The average prisoner salary is 3,129 shekels..."
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Withholding tax applies to all recipients of PA salaries, including the prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011
Headline: “Prisoners and their families praise [PA] government decision to raise salaries, [Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs] Karake: Withholding tax applies to every citizen who receives income from the PA”
     “A meeting was held between the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs and the Ministry of Finance. Several issues were clarified: The [withholding] tax applies to every citizen who receives income from PA treasury; it is within the framework of the Income Tax Act, and begins with salaries over 1,400 shekels per month. The initial rate is 5% for salaries over that amount. The tax rate is graduated, reaching at most only 10% of prisoners’ salaries. The Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs said that the prisoners in the Israeli prisons and their families are subject to the [tax] law.”
Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs gives grants and salaries to prisoners 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, May 5, 2011
Headline: “Payment of grants to released prisoners from the various districts of the homeland”
     “Yesterday, the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs began paying release grants to 1,212 released prisoners from the various districts of the homeland.
Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, Issa Karake, said that the Ministry had paid $1,200,000 in grants to prisoners released during 2007, 2008 and part of 2009.
He said that the process of updating data on prisoners in the prisons is still continuing, in order to conclude the process of paying the addition to the salaries of the prisoners, which began in early April…
Karake emphasized that the addition to the salaries, as well as all of the Ministry’s services, are provided for all male and female prisoners with no discrimination based on place of residence or political affiliation.”
PA daily: PA to pay salaries to all terrorists in Israeli prisons 
Source: Official PA daily, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Apr. 15, 2011
     "[Ali Abu Diak,] Secretary of the Central Bureau of the Prisoners' Movement, presented a concise review of the laws [concerning prisoners] published in vol. 90 of the official PA [Government] Registry, published on April 13, as follows:
...
4. Government resolution # 23 of 2010 concerning the amendment on payment of a monthly salary to the prisoner:
Every prisoner will be granted a monthly salary, to be paid to him or to his family, on condition that he does not receive a salary from a [different] governmental or semi-governmental body or official institution... The salary will be paid to the prisoner from the date of his arrest, and a special supplement will be paid to prisoners from Jerusalem and from the Interior [i.e., Israeli Arabs]; a spousal supplement will be paid, and a special supplement for children up to the age of 18...
The minimum salary for a prisoner, to be paid to him from the beginning of his detention and for up to 3 years, is 1400 Shekels. Prisoners who have been imprisoned between 3 and 5 years will receive 2,000 Shekels. Those imprisoned between 5 and 10 years will receive 4,000 Shekels. Those imprisoned between 10 and 15 years will receive 6,000 Shekels. Those imprisoned between 15 and 20 years will receive 7,000 Shekels. Those imprisoned between 20 and 25 years will receive 8,000 Shekels. Those imprisoned between 25 and 30 years will receive 10,000 Shekels. Those who have been imprisoned 30 years or more will receive 12,000 Shekels...
These regulations will be implemented from Jan. 1, 2011, on the basis of available sources of funding."
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Proposed amendment to prisoners' law affects monthly salaries for prisoners 
Source: Ma’an, independent Palestinian news agency, July 1, 2010
     “Minister for Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Karake expressed his satisfaction at the Palestinian government’s approval of four suggested amendments to the Prisoners and Released Prisoners Law (19) of 2004 that are aimed at improving the prisoners’ situation and that of their families. The revisions will take effect beginning in early 2011 and will be included in the general Palestinian government budget.
The four amendments are: A proposed amendment dealing with monthly salaries paid to a prisoner and his family; a proposed amendment concerning prisoners’ legal expenses; a proposed amendment concerning prisoners’ needs while incarcerated; and a proposed amendment dealing with released prisoners’ exemptions from tuition, health insurance payments, and payment for professional training.”
63% of prisoners receiving salaries are unmarried with no children 
Source: Al-Quds, Jan. 3, 2010
     “The Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs in Ramallah said that there are 2,805 married [prisoners], representing 37.4% percent of the total number. There are 4,695 unmarried prisoners, representing 62.6%.”
PA Minister Fayyad: The PA “has always made the financial needs of the prisoners’ issue its top priority” 
Source: Al-Ayyam, July 14, 2004
Article by Minister of Finance Salam Fayyad:
     “Let us settle the issue between us: the Ministry of Finance and I personally are being subjected to an unjust, wrong and misleading attack based on claims made by a few who are trying to exploit the prisoners’ issue, with all its painful and tragic aspects, [saying] that the Ministry of Finance has neglected this issue and is treating our imprisoned brothers in the Israeli occupation’s prisons as repressed and forgotten... As I have said, this is an unjust, wrong and misleading attack. It is unjust because of its content, and as will be explained below using numbers, it is the exact opposite of reality, since the [Palestinian] National Authority has always made the financial needs of the prisoners’ issue its top priority...
This thing [the obligation towards the prisoners] will be fulfilled only through the release of the prisoners and their return to their families and by providing all the means for them to join their working brothers, in both the public and private sectors, on the way to building the state and institutions.
I will now present information regarding... the prisoners’ allowances:
1. The expenditure for the prisoners’ allowances increased between June 2002 to June 2004 and reached 6.9 million shekels per month. This is a 246% increase in the monthly average compared with January 1995 to June 2002.
2. The amount spent on the prisoners’ and released prisoners’ allowances from June 2002 to June 2004 is about 177 million shekels, i.e. an average of 88.5 million shekels per year. This, compared with the sum of 121 million shekels spent between January 1995 to June 2002, i.e. an average of 16 million shekels per year...
3. In addition to the allowances, the PA covered other expenses (fines, lawyer fees, and aid for released prisoners) at a sum of 22 million shekels from 2002 to 2004."
PA officials: Imprisoned terrorists are ‎‎“soldiers of the PA” and receive ‎salaries, they should receive higher ‎salaries 
Source: Al-Ayyam, Jan. 18, 2000
Headline: “729,000 dollars distributed to ‎families of prisoners whose homes were ‎demolished”‎
     ‎“Yesterday, [Jan. ‎‎18, 2000] Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs, ‎Hisham Abdul Razek met with members of ‎the Parliamentary Education and Social ‎Affairs Committee and informed them that ‎the [compensation] committee had ‎finished transferring the checks to those ‎entitled to them last week and added that ‎the total sum [of the distributed money] is ‎approximately 729,000 US dollars. He ‎elaborated and said that every prisoner ‎from Jerusalem whose home was ‎demolished received 7,000 dollars and ‎every prisoner from the West Bank or ‎Gaza Strip whose home was demolished ‎received 5,000 dollars. He said that there ‎are seven prisoners from Jerusalem and ‎the rest are from the West Bank and Gaza ‎Strip… And in a different context, ‎‎[minister] Abdul Razek explained that ‎the Ministry of Prisoners’ Affairs ‎considers anyone detained [in Israel] a ‎soldier of the PA and therefore and ‎accordingly, every prisoner is entitled to ‎the full rights of an ordinary soldier in ‎the [nation’s] service, including a salary ‎starting at 900 shekels. Head of the ‎Education Committee and member of ‎Parliament, Abbas Zaki asserted that the ‎prisoners should not be considered ‎only as [simple] soldiers and demanded ‎that they be awarded higher salaries ‎and military ranks – so that the Israeli ‎prison management would not treat ‎them as no more than simple soldiers.”‎

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