PA Official Claims Qatar Invests in Jewish Communities

Saeb Erekat accuses Qatar of investing in Karnei Shomron in Samaria. Regional council says it would accept the funds, but no one has offered any.

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Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu, | updated: 19:46

Karnei Shomron
Karnei Shomron
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Qatar has invested in companies in Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, Palestinian Authority senior negotiator Saeb Erekat has charged. He threatened to release documents proving the financial activity, according to the Bethlehem-based Ma'an news agency.

Nearly one-quarter of the largest Israeli companies in Karnei Shomron, located about 10 miles east of the northern edge of metropolitan Tel Aviv, rely on Qatari money, Erekat claimed.

"The time will come in the future to reveal these documents," he threatened in remarks at a panel at a Shechem university.

The claim is absurd, Karnei Shomron spokesman Arik Zolger told Israel National News Wednesday. “We have never taken one cent from Qatar or any other Arab country.”

Zolger added that if Arab nations want to invest in Jewish companies, “We would consider the request.”

Erekat’s charge was aimed at Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamadi bin Khalifa Ath-Thani, who was identified in leaked documents recently published by Al-Jazeera, which is based in Qatar. The emir allegedly tried to push his own political agenda to press for the release of Hamas prisoners from Palestinian Authority prisons.

Erekat accused Al Jazeera and the London Guardian of working together to release the documents on negotiation between the Palestinian Authority and Israel. The leaked material revealed concessions made by the PA and was part of a “huge and unprecedented attack” on the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Erekat declared.