Daily Israel Report

Min. Landau Calls to Revisit Israel-PA Agreements

Following PA calls to boycott Israel, Israel should reconsider its past economic agreements with the PA, says Min. Uzi Landau.
By Maayana Miskin
First Publish: 1/12/2011, 8:12 PM / Last Update: 1/12/2011, 8:19 PM

Yoni Kempinski

In light of the Palestinian Authority's calls to boycott Israel, Israeli leaders should reconsider their allegiance to past Israel-PA economic treaties, says Minister of National Infrastructure Uzi Landau.

In an interview with Arutz Sheva's Hebrew-language news service, Landau noted that Israel continues to abide by agreements calling for trade without borders between Israel and the PA, despite the PA's violation of the same agreements.

The government has decided to issue an additional 5,000 work permits for PA Arabs, Landau said. He announced that he plans to appeal the decision. Eleven percent of PA Arabs who are employed are currently working for Israelis.

“Not only are we not insisting on separation between us, we are turning the other cheek and putting up with boycotts,” Landau said.

The PA boycott is in violation of the part of the Oslo Accords called the Protocol on Economic Relations between the Government and the PLO Representing the Palestinian Nation [sic], and also known as the Paris Agreement of 1994.

Israel continues to abide by the agreements by trading with the PA, giving PA merchants access to the Israeli market, allowing PA Arabs to work in Israel, and promoting initiatives to boost the PA economy.

Israel also sends water, electricity, and gas to Gaza and continued to do so even after the Hamas takeover of the region. Fear of the political backlash Israel could face for violating the accords appears to be the reason for the continued aid to Gaza, Landau said.

In addition to requiring PA Arabs to boycott Israel – or face arrest – the PA says it plans to require Israeli companies that sign contracts with it to boycott all Israeli products made east of the 1949 armistice line.

Any companies that give in to the PA's demands will find themselves cut off by the National Infrastructure Ministry, Landau warned. Minister of Science Daniel Hershkowitz issued a similar warning on Tuesday.