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Israeli Govt. Releases PA Tax Funds

Israeli Govt. Releases PA Tax Funds

Tuesday, 24 March, 2020 - 11:15
A worker wearing a protective suit arrives to disinfect the Church of the Nativity as a preventive measure against the coronavirus, in Bethlehem in the Israeli-occupied West Bank March 5, 2020. REUTERS/Mussa Qawasma

A Palestinian official said on Monday that Israel transferred 120 million shekels to the Palestinian Authority’s treasury.

The fund is a part of tax money collected by Israel on behalf of the PA on Israeli controlled commercial crossings.

Minister of the Palestinian Civil Affairs Authority Hussein Al-Sheikh confirmed that Israel transferred the amount as part of the tax revenues due to the Palestinian Authority.

Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahaloun, approved on Sunday the funds’ transfer, based on assessments by Israeli security intelligence and military officials that the Palestinian Authority could face some serious financial crisis amid the coronavirus outbreak

Israeli security officials expressed concern that the worsening of the coronavirus crisis for the Palestinian Authority could exacerbate the crisis in Israel.

Close cooperation is ongoing between the Israeli Ministry of Health and the PA, and many decisions regarding the two sides are made in coordination and agreement.

Last Monday, Palestinian Finance Minister Shukri Bishara met his Israeli counterpart for this purpose. Beshara asked Kahaloun “to release all the sums withheld by the Israeli side since last year, as an absolute necessity under the current circumstances.”

The meeting was held mainly to discuss “the economic situation facing the two sides in light of the spread of the virus.”

Israel has helped train Palestinian doctors to tackle the virus, and sent medical supplies, while both parties continue to exchange information on the number of infected cases and their movement.

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