Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyhu held an urgent meeting with Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon earlier today to discuss the deteriorating Palestinian economy in the West Bank, according to a report on Channel 12 news.
According to the report, Israeli officials are concerned that the Palestinian Authority will collapse entirely in the wake of President Mahmoud Abbas’ refusal to accept tax revenues collected by Israel, after it withheld part of the money, commensurate to payments made by the PA to the families of Palestinian attackers and prisoners.
Israel announced in February that it would withhold $138 million in monthly payments to the PA to offset the PA’s payments to Palestinians jailed by Israel for terrorism and violence, and to the families of dead terrorists.
The Palestinians have protested the law, refusing to receive any of the taxes Israel gathers for them on a monthly basis, as long as the Jewish state does not transfer them their full amount.
The taxes Israel collects and transfers to the PA make up hundreds of millions of shekels, more than half of its monthly budget.