Last updated: 2 June, 2012

Arabs approve financial safety net for Palestinians

Arab states Saturday agreed to set a “financial safety net” for the Palestinian Authority if Israel freezes due monthly revenue estimated at around $100 million, Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erakat said.

The Palestinian side had asked for the assistance during a meeting of the special ministerial Arab League’s Peace Initiative Committee, meeting in the Qatari capital Doha.

It asked for “a financial safety net to be used in case the Israeli side opted to blackmail us through withholding due taxes and revenues which are estimated at around $100 million per month,” Erakat said after the meeting.

“We requested this amount as a safety net from the Arab brothers and it has been agreed upon, and we hope that the matter will be processed… and an execution mechanism established.”

Israeli authorities levy taxes and custom duties on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, under interim peace deals. But Israel has in the past frozen such processing of PA revenues at times of escalated tension.