July 23, 2024

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World Bank continues to ignore large percentage of Palestinian budget that promotes terror


The World Bank continues to issue reports about how bad the Palestinian economy is:

JERUSALEM, April 27, 2017 – Foreign aid and investment alone will have limited impact on the Palestinian economy without significant changes on the ground, according to a new World Bank report. A paradigm shift is needed among all parties to break the vicious cycle of near-stagnant economic growth and ongoing political uncertainty – and this could allow foreign aid to have a much more catalytic impact.

The new World Bank report will be presented to the Ad Hoc Liaison committee (AHLC) on May 4, 2017 in Brussels, a policy-level meeting for development assistance to the Palestinian people. The report points out that actions to address past recommendations for policy changes have been inadequate. In addition, the report issues a call to address immediate risks created by economic stagnation that could endanger the social equilibrium by creating the conditions for sustainable growth.

“The Palestinian economy is failing to generate jobs and incomes,” said Marina Wes, World Bank Country Director for West Bank and Gaza,”one third of Palestinians are out of work and more than half of the youth in Gaza are jobless. Gaza is on the verge of a human catastrophe. Such a critical situation is not in anyone’s interest. Concerted efforts by all sides are needed to bring a real change on the ground, boost economic growth and provide hope and prospects for Palestinians, especially youth.”                  

In the face of dwindling donor aid, the report outlines a number of policy recommendations for improving economic conditions and laying the foundations for sustainable growth. With an US$800 million financing gap, the Palestinian Authority (PA) has to address government spending in payroll and pension payments, and improve its revenue collection through the domestic tax system. Actions are also needed to improve the investment climate and competitiveness, and help new companies enter the market.

The World Bank issues detailed reports on the economies in the territories, and it notes how the PA pays to much in salaries.

But it never mentions how much the PA (or their parent PLO) pays to terrorists and their families.

As of last year, $128,518,896 was paid to terrorists in prison and ex-prisoners, and $174,630,296 to the families of “martyrs.”  This doesn’t include the parts of the PA budget that indirectly support terrorists like their Commission of Detainees and ex-Detainees Affairs.

Don’t be fooled by the claim that these expenses are now paid by the PLO, not the PA. The PA gives the PLO $230 million a year.

For an economy that is in such bad shape, these are huge sums of money.

Yet these payments to terrorists are sacred to the Palestinian leadership.

A senior Palestinian Authority official has rejected the “insane” demand that it end its policy of providing social welfare payments to the families of Palestinian terrorists jailed for carrying out attacks against Israelis.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas’s foreign affairs adviser Nabil Shaath on Thursday told Israel Radio the demand was intentionally designed to sink any potential for renewed US-led Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

It’s absurd to request that we stop paying the families of prisoners,” he said. “That would be like asking Israel to stop paying its soldiers.”

There you have it: terrorists to murder children are the Palestinian equivalent of soldiers.

This is the elephant in the room. And the only reason the World Bank doesn’t mention these huge expenses in their reports is because it is too politically explosive to say that paying terrorists is a Bad Thing.

Which brings up the more fundamental question of why does a society that prioritizes paying terrorists over its own economy, over building hospitals and universities and real state institutions, deserve to become a state?

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