UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday expressed concern after the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) central council decided to end security cooperation with Israel in response to Israel’s decision to withhold the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) tax revenues.
Ban, however, had criticism for Israel and called on the Jewish state to resume the transfer of taxes, which are being held back from the PA in retaliation for its moves to join the International Criminal Court (ICC).
"The Secretary-General repeats his call on Israel to resume the transfer of tax revenues legally due to the Palestinian Authority as per the Paris Protocol," UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said, according to the Xinhua news agency.
While urging both parties to "exercise utmost restraint" and "reverse their unhelpful cycle of actions and counter-actions," Ban stressed that in the absence of effective international engagement, the situation may "further unravel," according to Dujarric.
"The Secretary General urgently calls on the international community, including the Security Council, to exercise leadership and help create conditions for a negotiated final peace agreement that will end the Israeli occupation and realize the creation of a viable Palestinian state, living in peace and security alongside Israel," he added.
PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas has several times threatened to cut the PA’s security coordination with Israel, the last time being before he submitted his unilateral bid to the UN.
Secretary of State John Kerry recently warned that the U.S. fears that without a cash injection, the Palestinian Authority could collapse — entailing serious security implications for both Palestinians and Israelis.
The PA has repeatedly asked for foreign donations, claiming it is on the verge of collapse due to a worsening financial crisis.
While blaming Israel for the PA’s financial woes, its chairman Mahmoud Abbas continues to spend six percent of the PA’s annual budget to pay $4.5 million a month to jailed terrorists and another $6.5 million to their families.
(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)