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      Abbas Uses More Foreign Aid to Pay Freed Terrorists

      Abbas matches Hamas’ generosity and honors freed terrorists with a $5,000 grant, partially funded by the United States and Europe.
      By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
      First Publish: 10/23/2011, 7:41 AM

      Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has bested Hamas’ generosity and is honoring freed terrorists with a $5,000 grant, partially funded by the United States and the European Union. Meanwhile, Hamas urges more kidnappings.

      A PA law states that salaries "will be implemented... on the basis of available sources of funding," reported the Arab daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida last April. Abbas warned earlier this month that Washington's decision to suspend financial aid to the PA damages the "peace process."

      Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) noted at the time that “it is the contributions by the United States and other foreign donors to the PA general budget that facilitates the payment of monthly salaries to the terrorist prisoners.”

      Palestinian Authority Prisoners Affairs Minister Issa Qaraqi stated at the end of last week that Abbas would pay the grant to hundreds of the freed terrorists and security prisoners, more than the $2000 grant announced by de facto Gaza Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas.

      He did not immediately state the amount of the grant, but Israel state radio reports had estimated it at more than the usual amount of double the $860 monthly salaries paid to military personnel.

      Abbas has frequently stated that the PA cannot pay monthly salaries without foreign aid.

      The grants to terrorists also contradict Abbas' commitments not to encourage terror.

      Meanwhile, Hamas continues to urge more kidnappings of Israeli soldiers as bargaining chips to force the freeing of approximately 5,000 Arab security prisoners and terrorists still in Israeli prisons.