Israel ices $100M Palestinian payout
RAMALLAH, West Bank — Returning to a hero's welcome Sunday after gaining limited recognition of statehood at the United Nations, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas faced fresh punitive action by Israel, which froze the transfer of more than $100 million in tax revenue collected for his cash-strapped government.
The Israeli step was the second response to the vote last week at the U.N. General Assembly, which granted the Palestinians the status of a “non-member observer state.” On Friday, Israel said it would build 3,000 homes in West Bank settlements and in East Jerusalem, and would advance controversial settlement plans near the city in an area deemed critical for the territorial contiguity of a Palestinian state.
Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz announced that he was halting the transfer of tax and customs revenues collected by Israel for the Palestinian Authority. A spokeswoman for Steinitz said that a monthly tax transfer of about $120 million due to be made this week would not be carried out because of “the unilateral step taken by the Palestinians.” The funds would be diverted to meet a debt of some $200 million to the Israel Electric Corp., the spokeswoman said.
Still, the mood at the presidential compound in Ramallah was euphoric. A flag-waving crowd of thousands erupted when Abbas declared: “We now have a state.
“The world has said loudly: ‘Yes to the State of Palestine. . . . No to aggression, settlement and occupation,' “ he added.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Donetsk rattled by explosions; airport at risk
- News Alert
- News Alert
- Britain’s Cameron vows to cut taxes, deficit, EU powers
- U.S., rebels on shaky ground in campaign in Syria
- Ukraine braces for frigid winter amid uncertainty about natural gas supply from Russia
- Afghan president heads unity government poised to sign pact to keep U.S. troops
- 10,000 U.S. troops to stay in Afghanistan as security treaty is finally signed