Palestinian Authority announces its refusal to receive Israeli-allocated taxes

President Mahmoud Abbas announced that Ramallah will no longer accept any of the monthly tax revenues received from Jerusalem, following Israel’s decision to withhold 5 percent of the sums in response to the P.A.’S continued financial support for families of individuals who were either killed or incarcerated as a result of terror-related offenses.

After an emergency meeting in Ramallah over an appropriate response to the Israeli measure, Abbas stressed that the Palestinian Authority will continue to support the families of whom he referred to as “martyrs,” even if there were only 20-30 million shekels in its coffers.

Israel collects about 700 million shekels (equivalent to about 170 million Euros) in Palestinian taxes, of which around 146 million Euros is transferred to the P.A. after deductions of electricity, water, sewage and medical treatment services provided by Israel to the Palestinian population.

It is also important to note that last month the Palestinian Authority declined some $60 million U.S.D. in Washington’s annual funding for the Palestinian Security Forces. According to a Palestinian source, that decision was made after concerns emerged about possible exposure to lawsuits under the new U.S. anti-terror law, which allows the U.S. Administration to sharply reduce aid to the Palestinian Authority unless it halted financial support to Palestinians convicted for terror-related offences. The legislation was enacted last year and called “the Taylor Force Act,” in the name of a 29-year-old American military veteran who was fatally stabbed while visiting Israel in 2016 by a Palestinian terrorist.