Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan proposed a new bill that would impose a maximum sentence of up to three years in prison for those who sponsor, finance, support or organize activities for the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the occupied East Jerusalem.
In this context, Erdan proposed amending the current law and restricting the activities of the PA to the West Bank and Gaza Strip only.
The current law prohibits organization of activities in favor of the PA in Jerusalem, but does not penalize those who organize such activities, so Erdan proposed a series of penalties amounting to 3 years imprisonment to completely prevent such activities.
Erdan presented the bill after he was briefed on a report prepared by Israel’s Security Agency (Shin Bet) which stated that Palestinian activities in East Jerusalem have increased recently, especially after US President Donald Trump announced the “deal of century” and transferred the US embassy to Jerusalem, according to political sources in Tel Aviv.
The Shin Bet report said the Authority is holding more demonstrations, festivals and political seminars. It is also sending more Palestinian ministers as representatives to various facilities in Jerusalem and increased intervention in the internal affairs of Jerusalem.
The minister claims the amendment of the law will dramatically enhance the deterrence of those cooperating with the PA and the goal is to prevent any “foothold of the Palestinian Authority in Jerusalem.”
Israeli authorities have organized dozens of campaigns in recent years against PA activities in Jerusalem, arresting and detaining hundreds of political activists and intellectuals, most of whom are Hamas deputies in the city, and a number of Fatah members, including the city's governor.
Three months ago, Israel banned a cultural activity in the French Cultural Center in East Jerusalem, causing a diplomatic problem with the French Foreign Ministry, which summoned the Israeli ambassador to Paris, Aliza Bin Noun.