Reports Wednesday said that the Palestinian Authority has received a $100 million loan from Qatar. The money is to go towards paying salaries. Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, who is visiting Qatar, issued a public statement of gratitude, Reuters reported.
Earlier in the week, Abbas threatened to file charges against Israel in the International Criminal Court (ICC), accusing Israel of “stealing” money the PA is supposed to get, according to Abbas. At issue is a portion of the money Israel collects on behalf of the PA for import duties and taxes.
Israel has been holding that money in escrow for the past four months in protest of the PA's violations of the Oslo Accords, which specifically stipulate that the PA cannot unilaterally join international organizations. Over the weekend, Israel decided to release part of the tax money, withholding a portion to pay Israeli creditors, like the Israel Electric Corporation. Abbas refused to accept the funds, demanding that Israel had over all the money, regardless of the PA's debt.
Knesset Finance Committee Nissan Slomiansky (Jewish Home) said in response that he would call a meeting of the Committee to discuss how to distribute the funds that Abbas rejected. “Abbas's decision to reject the tax money is incomparably arrogant It also indicates what we can expect in the future from him.”
Abbas, said Slomansky, “thinks he is in the middle of coalition talks, where he can keep raising his price. He is operating in violation of international agreements by joining these international organizations such as the ICC,” he added.