PMW Bulletins
Changes in Europe and the US - thanks to PMW!
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Changes in Europe and the US -
thanks to PMW!
;
Last Friday, Britain froze £25 million in aid to the Palestinian Authority in response to PMW reports
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Lawmakers in Germany, Norway, Denmark, 
Holland, Sweden and the US
also call to change, limit, or cut financial aid to the PA
in response to PMW reports

 
Highlights:

 
About PMW's report The PA's Billion Dollar Fraud

"A devastating new report by Palestinian Media Watch

suggests that Western donors have been duped
by assertions that the PA no longer funds terrorists"
[The Mail on Sunday (Britain)]
Britain
  • British MP Joan Ryan: "Last month, Palestinian Media Watch showed how the PA sought to deceive international donors"
  • British MP Jim Shannon: "All the Minister has to do is turn on his computer and visit www.palwatch.org [PMW website] and see for himself"
Last Friday, Britain acted on PMW findings and announced a freeze in funding:

"Millions of pounds of British aid money [to the PA] is being suspended... The move follows fears money intended for civil servants was being spent on paying terrorist prisoners." [
Daily Mail, Oct. 7, 2016]

 
Germany
  • German TV News: "Itamar Marcus... [of Palestinian Media Watch] has documented the flow of money to the prisoners"
  • German MP Volker Beck: "Supporting people who have committed terrorist acts against Israel or Israeli citizens cannot be funded under any circumstances by the PA, when we [Germany] support them [the PA] financially."
Norway
  • NRK TV reporter: "The Norwegian Foreign Ministry confirms PMW's claim."
  • Norwegian MP, Hans Olav Syversen: "I believe there must be consequences. It would be subversive for us if money that is given to build up Palestinian society, in reality is used to pay salaries to prisoners" 
  • Norwegian Foreign Minister Brende: "It is totally unacceptable to incite to violence or grant the status of hero to people who are violent."
The Netherlands
After receiving PMW report, Dutch Parliament passed a motion:

"The Palestinian Authority since 2011 transfers money to convicted Palestinians, including terrorists in Israeli prisons... there must be financial consequences if the PA continues [to pay the salaries]"


 
Denmark
  • Danish parliament question to the Foreign Minister:
    "What is the Danish position regarding the fact that terror attacks are glorified and that there is a financial reward to the perpetrators of the terror?"
  • Foreign Minister Kristian Jensen: "I'm not interested in seeing funds going in the wrong direction. If we can do a better job [to stop salaries to terrorists] by joining forces [with other countries], that is worth considering."
Sweden
  • Swedish MP Mikael Oscarsson:
    "Antisemitic statements and incitement to violence by Palestinian leaders are documented by Palestinian Media Watch... Aid to Palestine should therefore be conditioned..."
United States
  • US Senator Dan Coats: "I don't see how Palestinians can defend this practice; I don't understand how Israelis can accept this practice."
US Senate Subcommittee votes to cut funding to the PA "by amounts such entities provide as payments for acts of terrorism."
  • US Congressman Ed Royce: "You have [in the PA] a system where basically there's been an inducement to pay human assassins to seek out innocent people and kill them... The donor community is helping the PA basically pay people to slay other people and then a stipend is given" 
  • U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Anne Patterson: "I totally agree with you that this is an egregious practice."
PMW's report "The PA's Billion Dollar Fraud," is having a major international impact, on both the image and funding of the PA. The PMW report shows that according to PA law and in practice the PA continues to finance terror by paying salaries to terrorist prisoners, contrary to its promises to donor countries. This weekend, British press reported the UK's decision to suspend £25 million from this year's funding to the PA, in response to what PMW exposed:
 
"Millions of pounds of British aid money is being suspended amid fears it is going straight into the hands of Palestinian terrorists... It means £25 million - a third of the Palestine aid program - is on hold... The move follows fears money intended for civil servants was being spent on paying terrorist prisoners."
[Daily Mail, Oct. 7, 2016]

PMW's report The PA's Billion Dollar Fraud is the latest in a long row of PMW reports documenting the PA's practice of paying salaries to terrorists, and doing so with foreign aid money. When PMW released the report in March 2016, the British Mail on Sunday published a front-page story highlighting the significance of PMW's report which led to a parliamentary debate:

 "A devastating new report to be released this week by Palestinian Media Watch suggests that Western donors have been duped by assertions that the Authority no longer funds terrorists... Itamar Marcus, the report's author, said: 'There is willful blindness by the UK and EU, who were happy not to even carry out the simplest investigation.'"
[The Mail on Sunday, March 27, 2016]

The UK government's decision to cut PA funding follows demands by British Members of Parliament who cited PMW findings in Parliament:

MP Joan Ryan, Labour Party, UK Parliament, June 13, 2016:

"Last month, Palestinian Media Watch showed how the PA sought to deceive international donors by shutting the Ministry of Prisoners' Affairs and claiming that the Palestine Liberation Organisation would assume responsibility for those
 payments, but that was merely financial sleight of hand... I wrote to Ministers last month demanding that direct aid to the PA be suspended while these serious allegations are investigated."

MP Jim Shannon, Democratic Unionist Party, UK Parliament, June 13, 2016:

"All the Minister has to do is turn on his computer and visit www.palwatch.org [PMW website] and see for himself that the Palestinian Authority is misusing the funds given to it by Britain." 

 

  
MP Ian Austin, Labour Party, UK Parliament, June 13, 2016:
"[It] is completely wrong to say that it's a myth that the Palestinian Authority fund terrorists."

MP Andrew Percy, Conservative Party, to The Mail on Sunday:
"How can we justify foreign aid as a noble endeavor when taxpayers money goes to pay terrorists? The government has got to get a grip."
[The Mail on Sunday, Mar. 27, 2016] 

PMW's report on PA salaries to terrorist prisoners has also prompted outrage from legislators in other countries, where cuts to funding of the PA are also being demanded. The following are some highlights from some very extensive debates and news broadcasts:

 
German Parliament
 

German TV reporter:
"Itamar Marcus... [of Palestinian Media Watch] has documented the flow of money to the prisoners. He accuses the PA of encouraging the terror."

Itamar Marcus, PMW director:
"The message of the money is: 'You are a Palestinian hero!'... And how did they accomplish that? They killed, stabbed, and shot an Israeli."

 
MP, Volker Beck, The Greens Party
"Supporting people who have committed terrorist acts against Israel or Israeli citizens cannot be funded under any circumstances by the PA, when we [Germany] support them financially."

[German TV Channel 1, Aug. 25, 2016]

 

Norwegian Parliament

 
NRK TV (Norway), April 24, 2016

PMW director Itamar Marcus, on Norwegian TV:
"We found - not only do we have the [PA] leadership statements that they were paying, but we actually found the money transfers from the PA to the PLO, that would fit the exact amount they [the PLO] needed to pay the salaries to terrorists."

NRK TV reporter:
"The Norwegian Foreign Ministry confirms PMW's claim."

MP, Jorund H. Rytman, Spokesperson on foreign aid, Progress Party:
"This must have consequences in terms of cutting the aid money so that [Norway] does not just protest, but shows it will act."

MP, Hans Olav Syversen, Acting parliamentary leader, Christian Democrats:
"I believe there must be consequences. It would be subversive for us if money that is given to build up Palestinian society, in reality is used to pay salaries to prisoners..."
[NRK TV (Norway), April 24, 2016]
   
Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende: PA salaries to terrorists "is unacceptable":

"(MP Jørund Rytman, Progress Party) asked if [Foreign Minister] Brende would publicly condemn Antisemitism as is seen in the Palestinian areas and elsewhere, based on the report from Palestinian Media Watch...
(Brende:) 'It is totally unacceptable to incite to violence or grant the status of hero to people who are violent.'... On May 3 [2016], the foreign minister repeated to [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas that the prisoner salary program is unacceptable.[...]
'I hope and will continue to fight for Norway [to] stop the flow of money [to the PA] if salaries to convicted terrorists do not cease. If dialogue does not work and they [the PA] won't listen, then we must act,' says Rytman."
[Dagen (Norway), May 12, 2016]

 
Dutch Parliament

Soon after the release of PMWs report, Dutch Parliament passed a motion demanding "that there be financial consequences" across Europe if the PA continues funding salaries to terrorists:

"The Palestinian Authority since 2011 [date exposed by PMW] transfers money to convicted Palestinians, including terrorists in Israeli prisons... [Dutch Parliament] calls on the Government, within the EU, if necessary by leading like-minded countries to make every effort that there be financial consequences if the Palestinian Authority continues to finance the implementation of these payments to the PLO..."
[Motion passed in Dutch Parliament, June 14, 2016, by members
Voordewind, De Roon, Van der Staaij, and Knops]

 
Danish Parliament

 
Council question to the Foreign Minister:
"What is the Danish position regarding the fact that terror attacks are glorified and that there is a financial reward to the perpetrators of the terror?"

MP Klaus Kvist Hansen (Danish People's Party):
"There is something that puzzles me a bit. That is the [Foreign] Minister's self-confidence when he rejects that Danish aid money may have gone to this [PA] salary program for terrorists [exposed by PMW]... I have noticed that, often, when funds are misused, then everyone is busy saying that 'our specific donation is going to the right purpose'... But the money is coming from somewhere. So I'm asking, would the minister consider talking to all the other donors [countries] in order to at least take joint action to stop this?"

Foreign Minister Kristian Jensen:
"Yes, I will consider it. I'm not interested in seeing funds going in the wrong direction. If we can do a better job together by joining forces, then I think that is worth considering... I think this is a constructive suggestion and I will try to see if we can create support for it."
[Open Council with the Danish Foreign Minister, Danish Parliament website, May 17, 2016]
 

 
Swedish Parliament
 

MP Mikael Oscarsson to Swedish Minister for International Development,Isabella Lövin:
"Representatives of Fatah and the Palestinian Authority regularly celebrates terror attacks against Israel... Antisemitic statements and incitement to violence by Palestinian leaders are documented by Palestinian Media Watch... Aid to Palestine should therefore be conditional on the Palestinian Authority stopping to disseminate antisemitic propaganda..."
[Debate in Swedish Parliament, March 4, 2016]

 
US Congress

One week after receiving PMW's report "The PA's Billion Dollar Fraud," Chairman of Congress's Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce challenged Assistant Secretary of State Anne Patterson about US funding of the PA. The following is a short excerpt from the long discussion:

 
Congressman Ed Royce
US Assistant Secretary of State
Anne Patterson

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..."

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, Anne Patterson:
"I totally agree with you that this is an egregious practice. But let me also stress, Mr. Chairman, that I think that our assistance to the PA does many beneficial things... So we will continue to press them on this issue..."

Congressman Ed Royce:
"The donor community is helping the PA basically pay people to slay other people...The reality is that the donor community is coming together internationally to fund the PA... We have to use our leverage to cut this out..."
[House Foreign Affairs Committee YouTube Channel, April 13, 2016]

 
US Senate 

A US Senate Subcommittee recently voted to include language in the Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill for 2017 to cut funding to the PA by the amount the PA pays in salaries to terrorists. The bill was approved by the House Appropriations Committee on July 12, 2016:

US FY2017 State & Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill approved by Subcommittee: "Palestinian Authority - The bill retains restrictions on assistance for the West Bank and Gaza in current law, as well as restrictions on assistance for the Palestinian Authority. The bill includes the Palestine Liberation Organization along with the Palestinian Authority, and any successor or affiliated organizations, in the assistance reductions required by amounts such entities provide as payments for acts of terrorism."
[http://www.appropriations.senate.gov/news/majority/fy2017-state-and-foreign-operations-appropriations-bill-gains-subcommittee-approval]

US Sen. Dan Coats initiated these steps in the Senate, and demanded that the US take a moral stand in response to the PA's salaries to terrorists:

"I don't see how Palestinians can defend this practice; I don't understand how Israelis can accept this practice, on the argument of maintaining stability in that government. At some point, the moral imperative rises above."
[The Jerusalem Post, June 29, 2016]